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CITY HOMES ON COUNTRY LANES 



THE MACMILLAN COMPANY 

NEW YORK BOSTON CHICAGO DALLAS 
ATLANTA SAN FRANCISCO 

MACMILLAN & CO., LIMITED 

LONDON BOMBAY CALCUTTA 
MELBOURNE 

THE MACMILLAN CO. OP CANADA. LTD. 

TORONTO 




HER HOME-IN-A-GARDEX 



CITY HOMES 
ON COUNTRY LANES 

PHILOSOPHY AND PRACTICE OF THE 
HOME-IN-A-GARDEN 



BY 



WILLIAM E. SMYTHE 

AUTHOR OF 

"THE CONQUEST OF ARID AMERICA,'* 

ETC 



H3eto gotfe 

THE MACMILLAN COMPANY 
1921 

All rights reserved 



PRINTED IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 



COPYRIGHT, 1921, 
BT THE MACMILLAN COMPANY. 



Set up and printed. Published October, 1921. 



Press of 

J. J. Little is Ives Companj 
New York, U. S. A, 



TO MEMORY 
'ANNISQUAM' 



FOREWORD 

I am an optimist. 

I believe the world is going to be a better world for 
our common humanity in the next decade the next 
generation the next century than ever before in the 
long history of the race. And I believe the next passion 
of mankind will be for the soil that there we shall 
"take Occasion by the hand and make the bounds of 
freedom wider yet." But, if there is to be a transition 
in the life of the land if new forms of industry and 
society are to emerge then this will be due to the fact 
that the old life on the land has failed, is breaking down, 
and is doomed to pass away. 

That is what I believe to be true. In saying so, I 
sound no note of pessimism, but rather the note of hope, 
of confidence, of boundless faith in what the future is 
to bring forth. I know the land is to be the healing 
and the saving of the people of our people and of all 
the peoples. 

There is no other refuge. 

But before we can build the new life we must clearly 
understand that the old life has failed, and why it has 
failed. Then we must proceed to discover the principles 
upon which the new and better life is to be founded. 
In doing so, must we not inevitably draw nearer to the 

vii 



viii Foreword 

Divine Purpose in making the goodly earth and setting 
man in the midst of it ? And shall we not thereby evolve 
the Spiritual Man of the Soil, who, conscious of his 
partnership with God, enters at last into his true 
dominion ? 

Cosmos Club, 

Washington, D. C. 



CONTENTS 

FAGB 

FOREWORD . . . . . * * * vii 
PROLOGUE: THE INSPIRATION 1 



PART ONE 

THE WAY OF LIFE 

CHAPTER 

I. DIGGING TO THE ROOTS OF A DYING TREE 11 

II. THE LEADING OF THE FALSE GOD, PRO- 
DUCTION . '. . . * ' . . . 43 

III. "A PLAGUE ON BOTH YOUR HOUSES" . . 53 

IV. GETTING THE RURAL SAVOR INTO CITY 

LIFE . ... .... . . . 57 

V. THE INVISIBLE CITY OF HOMES ... 65 

VI. GARDEN INSTINCT REVEALED BY WAR. . 75 

VII. "THE MOST VALUABLE OF ALL ARTS" . , 83 

VIII. THE DAWNING OF THE NEW ART . . . 96 

IX. LUTHER BURBANK AND THE NEW EARTH . 103 

X. THE SPIRIT OF CREATIVE GARDENING . . 116 

XI. THE OLD HEN IN A NEW ENVIRONMENT . 123 

XII. THE RABBIT IN THE GARDEN ECONOMY . 133 

XIII. BROILED SQUAB, AND THAT SORT OF THING 142 

ix 



: Contents 

CHAPTER PAflB 

XIV. "AND THOU SHALT HAVE GOAT'S MILK" 149 

XV. THE HONEYBEE AND THE SUGAR-BOWL . 157 

XVI. THE ELUSIVE MUSHROOM 162 

XVII. THE LUXURIOUS TABLE IN REVIEW . . 167 

XVIII. SOCIAL LIFE OF THE GARDEN CITY . . 171 

XIX. THE PERSONAL EQUATION 181 

PART TWO 

THE CONSTRUCTIVE PROGRAMME 

I. THE AGE OF THE ENGINEER .... 195 

II. WHAT THE GOVERNMENT OWES THE 

PEOPLE . . . . . . . . .201 

III. THE ORGANIZATION OF A GARDEN CITY . 211 

IV. THE GARDEN CITY AND THE FARM CITY . 219 

PART THREE 

MECHANICS OF THE GARDEN HOME 

I. MAKING THE SOIL OVER . . . . . 227 

II. How TO HAVE A GOOD GARDEN . . . 232 

III. THE WINTER FOOD SUPPLY . , ', . V 240 

IV. LIVE STOCK OF THE GARDEN HOME . .; 256 
V. THE BEST TEACHERS EXAMPLE AND EX- 
PERIENCE . . . , . . . . V 263 

INDEX , 269 



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS 

Her Home-in-a-Garden , . * V . . Frontispiece 

PAGE 

Franklin K. Lane . . , . . * . . . 26 

Charles Lathrop Pack 78 

A Prize- Winning War Garden . . . .... 86 

Intensive Use of a City Lot .. . 98 

Luther Burbank -.*''. V 106 

Intensive Poultry Culture . . . . .... . 126 

Rabbits for Meat and Fur . .'. !|l?f? . .' . 134 

Two Favorite Breeds and Their Housing . . . 140 

Intensive Cultivation of the Market Squab . . . 146 

Popular Breeds of Swiss Goats . . . . ... 150 

The Milk Goat Is Ideal for the Garden Home . . 154 

The Common Hearthstone * 176 

Living Usefully at Eighty-One ..... . 184 

Serving Her Country at Over Ninety . . . V 188 

The Cooperative Department Store 216 

'Envoi . . . 268 



PROLOGUE 



Of what avail 
Are plow, or sail, 

Or land, or life, 
If Freedom fail? 

Emerson. 



PART ONE 
THE WAY OF LIFE 



CITY HOMES ON COUNTRY 
LANES 

PROLOGUE 



THE INSPIRATION 

"True dignity abides with her alone, 
Who in the silent hour of inward thought, 
Can still respect, can still revere, herself, 
In lowliness of heart." 

Wordsworth. 

THERE once lived a very noble woman who shared 
with me the dream of a new and better life to be 
realized on the soil, and who, in her own sphere 
of action, did what she could to bring the ideal to pass. 
For many years she was vicariously associated with 
a great public movement that transformed deserts into 
gardens and filled the waste places with homes. But 
usually she came first, and, after her, the homes and 
gardens. Hers was the era of the unbuilt house, of 
the unplanted ivy and roses, of the untamed soil, of the 
new hopes that struggled up toward the light through 
thickets of sagebrush and mesquite and cactus. 

Often she found herself in poor frail cabins on the 
desert claims, and often she mingled her tears with 
the tears of lonely pioneer women who could not see 

1 



2 City Homes on Country Lanes 

the glory that was to be perhaps because of the clouds 
of dust that came swirling from the treeless land. So 
she wept with the women, laughed with the children, and 
shared with the sturdy, ambitious men the hope of 
independence that sustained them in their struggle with 
the grim old desert. But these experiences always left 
her sad. "It is fine for the men," she would say ; "they 
see their chance for achievement. But it is hard for the 
women hard." And she felt there must be a way to 
soften, to ameliorate, the lot of the pioneer woman. 

Fate made her at length a pioneer woman herself 
the First Lady of a settlement embarked upon the most 
daring adventure of all, dedicated to the proposition 
of "a little land and a living" with the smallest unit 
ever adopted by any considerable number of families at 
one time and place. She did not shrink from her duty, 
ner opportunity, but met it more than half-way with 
outstretched hand. "Now," she said, "we shall see if it 
is possible to bring a little sunshine into the lives of the 
women, while the men are showing us what they can do 
on the land." 

The amount of money available for the building of 
her home was small ; the hope of a clubhouse, suited to 
her plan, remote. In this dilemma, she put nine-tenths 
of her building fund into a single beautiful room, 
ideally adapted to social purposes. For the rest of 
her home tents ; nice, roomy tents, connected by cov- 
ered passages, and supplied with floors, windows and 
doors; so that in a benign climate, where shelter is 
almost negligible, it made a livable and attractive 
"camp." Even so, it represented a sacrifice of personal 
comfort in the interest of her numerous neighbors. 



The Inspiration 3 

Festivities began with the "house-warming," which oc- 
curred even before the roads were made, though twenty 
or thirty homes were built, and others under way. It 
happened to be a Fourth of July the flag had been 
broken out on the tall staff for the first time at dawn 
and fireworks lighted the way for the settlers as they 
came through the sagebrush, or new-plowed fields. In 
spite of the season, it was cool enough, in that land of 
divine nights, to justify a modest blaze in the great 
cobblestone chimney, in token of hospitality. Every- 
body came in the best they had. Even dress-suits were 
worn by those who had them. 

The affair was more than a "house-warming," more 
than a social function. It sounded a new note a note 
of absolute democratic fellowship, for everybody was 
formally invited and everybody came; a note, too, of 
distinction, for it was then and there understood that 
the social and intellectual life of the community was 
to be placed on the highest possible plane, and stead- 
fastly maintained at that level. Moreover, it was an- 
nounced that on the following Thursday afternoon, and 
every Thursday thereafter, the hostess would receive 
the ladies of the community in her big reception room ; 
that every lady was cordially invited ; that these affairs 
were designed to be as fine in all respects as they would 
be in any town or city of the land; and that in that 
spirit each person was urged to do her part. 

And the ladies responded with alacrity and the utmost 
good will. There were no absentees; no one was ever 
tardy; no one ever wore less than her best. Among 
them were wives of professional and business men of 
liberal culture and wide social experience. There were 



4 City Homes on Cowntry Lanes 

others who were strangers to such functions. All met 
the same warm hand-clasp and gracious smile at the 
wide-flung door; all were soon equally at ease. The 
flowers, the music, the games, the refreshments, the 
favors, were precisely what the hostess would provide 
if she lived in town, or on a lordly country estate, in- 
stead of in a humble "camp" on the side of a sagebrush 
hill. And she made those pioneer women happy filled 
their cup to the brim. One of them remarked: "It's 
worth all the work and worry of the week, just to be 
here on Thursday afternoon." It was not simply the 
good times it was the leveling of all social barriers, 
the striving for the very best there is in life. 

The influence thus projected did not stop with one 
afternoon in the week, nor with the women alone. It 
spiritualized the whole community. It elevated the 
public meetings in the rude town hall, setting a high 
standard for all entertainments, and all meetings of an 
intellectual or social character. It overflowed into the 
front gardens and beautified them with flowers, some 
of them still fragrant with roses and tender with vines 
given by the gracious lady on the hillside. For, as 
her own love was perennial, so she loved to give her 
friends perennial plants that should fill the air with 
fragrance year after year. Yes, some of them are 
blooming yet ; and they do not forget her. They have 
long memories those roses ! 

I tell this story of the beginnings of our New Earth 
the New Earth that is to bring security and content- 
ment to millions because it illustrates a deep social 
principle, the absence of which has had its part in the 
decadence of American rural life; also, for another 



The Inspiration 5 

reason of equal importance the fact that it brought 
forth a noble phrase that immensely widens our hori- 
zons. 

The first experience in social upbuilding was fol- 
lowed in two other communities under the same leader- 
ship ; then came a period devoted to the intensive culti- 
vation of the ideal by other means. One day near the 
close of her mortal life the Pale Horse and his Rider 
were even then on the road and rapidly approaching 
she walked into my library and laid a slip of paper on 
the desk with the smiling request : "Some time when you 
feel just like it, please write something for me with 
that title." I looked and read the cryptic words: 

"The Dignity of the New Earth" 

It was a revelation, and to me a startling revelation 
not only of the depth of her own thought, but of the 
broad metaphysical basis of our work and our ideals. 

This, then, is her chapter, as nearly as it is possible 
to approximate her thought and language: 

I was reared in an old New England town. As a 
child, I loved a certain street which was filled with fine 
old homes setting well back from the rows of stately 
elms. These were the homes of our old families. They 
seemed enviable to me, not because of their luxury, for 
most of them were not at all palatial, but because of 
their dignity a dignity attaching to their age .and 
permanence. 

In these homes children were born and grew up. 
And in these homes the children's children were born 
and grew up. So it had been for generations ; and, in 
a few cases at least, for two centuries. To my childish 



6 City Homes on Cowntry Lanes 

mind there was no dignity like the dignity of a perma- 
nent family home from which all members of the house- 
hold went forth into the world, and to which they 
might all come back on occasion. 

To me the contrast between the repose of that street 
of old family homes and the restlessness of newer sec- 
tions was always very striking. It was an industrial 
town that grew rapidly. As factories multiplied, new 
population flowed in; at first from the surrounding 
country and then from foreign parts, until the number 
of languages spoken was amazing. This new popula- 
tion was mostly of floating character. It was housed 
in crowded tenements. The part of the town where it 
lived tended toward slum conditions. It was, of course, 
the very opposite of the street of old family homes. 
The gulf between them was not wealth and poverty. 
It was a far deeper gulf. It was dignity and the lack 
of dignity, and that is a matter of character, not of 
worldly possessions. But environment and training 
have everything to do with character. 

The lesson borne in upon me was that ownership 
and permanence of the home are essential to the highest 
dignity of life. Now it oddly happened that I was 
never to know these advantages in my own experience. 
While we owned more than one home in the course of 
our lives, they were only temporary, because it was of 
the nature of our work that we should be constantly 
on the move. This work had to do with the making of 
homes for thousands of people in many States. I have 
always thought of it as evangelical work, and of my 
husband as an evangelist of the Peter-the-Hermit sort. 

My longing was for a home that might become a 



The Inspiration 7 

family shrine, where my children and grandchildren 
might come after me. In the defeat of my own hopes I 
became passionately attached to this hope for others 
for our country and the world. To make such a hope 
possible of realization, I came to see that there must be 
a New Earth, or rather a new conception of the earth 
in its relation to the home. 

As our work unfolded over a period of more than a 
quarter of a century, I thought I saw the dawning of 
the New Earth in the very humblest way in a pioneer 
settlement where we went to live and work with the 
people who shared our hopes. Everything was very 
crude, my own home with the rest, yet, I could see in the 
little homes all about me that street of my childhood's 
fancy in the old New England town; and I could look 
beyond the crude beginnings to the time when the same 
quality of dignity, growing out of the same laws, would 
become the possession of the many. 

The New Earth, as I think of it, begins with the 
recognition that it is God's gracious provision for man, 
and as such too sacred for any purpose except to serve 
the needs of humanity. That conception rules out 
speculation. To put a price on land beyond fair com- 
pensation is unjust and really nothing less than an at- 
tempt to repeal a great law of God, and defeat His 
ends. This, too, from so low a motive as selfishness a 
selfishness to be paid for by woman's toil and tears 
and by innocent children deprived of their heritage. 

When we comprehend the ideals of the New Earth in 
all their purity and beauty we shall strive to make the 
most of it in every way, and the measure of our success 
will be the amount of human happiness thereby created. 



City Homes on Country Lanes 

To my mind, these hopes are inseparably bound up with 
the dignity of mankind its capacity for self-respect, 
its worthiness in every sense, its elevation of thought, 
bearing and conduct. 

The next attribute of the New Earth is workmanship. 
It is not to be like the slovenly industry I have often 
seen on many farms that so evidently belonged to the 
Old Earth where pride of workmanship was wholly 
absent. 

Pride and Dignity these are twin sisters. I mean 
the kind of pride that springs from worthiness, that 
scorns things mean and low, and most of all scorns 
them in ourselves. 

The New Earth is to be the object of loving care 
as much as our children. It begets a new spirit that is 
born of ownership, of the thought that here on this 
spot of land I will rear a family roof tree; that here 
my children will come in future years, and after them 
their children, and their children's children; and that 
thus the generations that trace back to me will enjoy 
the shade of my planting, the shelter raised by my 
thoughtful care for the future. Could anything so 
elevate, so dignify, the labor of the pioneer? Could 
anything so invest it with a skill and a forethought sur- 
passing all human skill and forethought and reflecting 
the Divine Intelligence? 

Beyond the individual and family life lies the life 
of the community. It is here I see the widest possibili- 
ties of the New Earth. It is here that the manifestation 
of Love will be highest because it loses much of its 
selfishness in the thought of the Common Good. 

In my own experience I was often disappointed in 



The Inspiration 9 

the expression of our ideals at the hands of individuals, 
but almost never disappointed by their expression at 
the hands of the community. If ever in the midst of 
our crude surroundings I have caught a glimpse of 
"the Light that Never was on Sea or Land" it was 
when a number of us were gathered together and giving 
expression to the ideals of the New Earth. I think 
indeed, I know that then for fleeting moments we lived 
in the great life of the future, though of course we only 
touched the hem of the garment. 

The spiritual outgrowth of the conditions that the 
New Earth provides for vast numbers will surpass all 
the dreams of the dreamers. Christ will come again. 
He will live in the lives of millions of consecrated souls, 
and He will bring dignity in its true sense to common 
things and the common experience. 

Dignity as I see it in this connection is a form of 
morality, because morality is the outward expression 
of that self-respect which dwelleth within, and is, in- 
deed, the highest form of self-respect. Hence, anything 
that enhances the dignity of a man enhances his moral- 
ity, and it was ever clear to me that this was the great 
office of the New Earth to lay deep and true the foun- 
dations of dignity in the common life of our people, 
which is equivalent to saying the foundations of self- 
respect and the highest morality. 

And here again, we pass from the individual to the 
community, and ultimately to the nation and the world. 
The New Earth so becomes in the course of time the 
Redeemer of mankind. It erects his life and roots his 
influence his all-conquering Thought in the fertile 
soil of ownership, but of ownership limited by conscience 



10 City Homes on Country Lanes 

to his needs those needs measured by the excellence of 
his workmanship and, hence enabling him to do well 
with a little land. Into that workmanship goes all the 
love of his family, even of the family that is to come 
into being in the far future. From these conditions 
spring growth of dignity and self-respect, and with it 
elevation of thought and bearing. This becomes the 
habit of the man, the habit of the community. It 
spreads with the spread of the New Earth and its 
ideals until it becomes in fact the New Heaven. 



CHAPTER I 

DIGGING TO THE ROOTS OF A DYING TEEE 

IT was generally assumed that the world would 
never be the same after the Great War, and that 
among the results of the mighty upheaval would 
be new forms of life on the land. In some countries, 
it was plain, this transformation would chiefly relate 
to ownership and distribution of the soil; in others, to 
the manner of its use ; but it was generally anticipated 
that everywhere the influence of the cataclysm would 
be registered upon the land in the character of its 
homes and institutions quite as clearly as in any 
other department of civilization. 

British statesmanship took stock of these possibili- 
ties while the War was still at its height, and began 
to brace itself against the impact of conditions that 
must assuredly follow the ending of the conflict. Not 
only in the Mother Country, but in the oversea colonies 
in Canada, in Australia, in New Zealand, in South 
Africa expert minds gave careful forethought to pre- 
paredness for peace. They believed their weary peoples 
would turn to the land, as to the shadow of a great 
rock. 

In the United States there were men who sensed the 
same situation. Long before the Battle of Chateau 
Thierry, Franklin K. Lane, Secretary of the Interior, 

11 



1 City Homes on Cowitry Lanes 

began to ponder the problem of Reconstruction. He 
anticipated that millions of men serving in the Army 
and Navy would be more or less weaned from their 
old occupations, and that a large proportion of those 
formerly employed in the factories and workshops 
would have fallen in love with outdoor life. He thought, 
too, that many of the places vacated by the selective 
draft would be filled by permanent occupants when 
the soldier returned, so that they would find the old 
familiar doors closed in their faces. It also seemed 
probable that the cessation of the intense industrial 
activities of the War would precipitate upon the coun- 
try an Army of Unemployed, with consequent suffer- 
ing, throughout a long period of readjustment. 
Though busily engaged as a member of the Council 
of National Defense in his part of the work of prose- 
cuting the War to a successful finish, he yet found 
time to look beyond that point, and consider what the 
Government could, or ought, to do, in the way of 
preparation. 

"Every country has found itself face to face with 
this situation at the close of a great war,'* he told 
the President, in a letter that will be historic. "From 
Rome under Csesar, to France under Napoleon, down 
even to our Civil War, the problem arose as to what 
could be done with the soldiers to be mustered out of 
the military service." 

He looked back to the close of our own Revolution, 
and recalled how the veterans had threaded their way 
through the forests of the Alleghenies to make homes 
in the valley of the Ohio. He recalled the phenomenal 
settlement in the Mississippi Valley, which followed 



Digging to the Roots of a Dying Tree 13 

close upon the cessation of the Civil War, when the 
citizenship of whole States, like Kansas, Nebraska, and 
the Dakotas, largely consisted of men who had worn 
the blue. He realized, however, that conditions had 
changed in 50 years ; that there was no longer a patri- 
mony of fertile public lands available to homestead 
entry, and requiring no preparation beyond the means 
of the individual settler. Nevertheless, the problem 
of the returning soldier remained to be dealt with. It 
was not an easy problem, but Secretary Lane possessed 
both the vision and the power to tackle its solution. 

He summoned to Washington men whom he thought 
especially equipped for the task by their knowledge, 
their experience, and their sympathies. He was think- 
ing primarily of the returning soldier, but soon dis- 
covered that the problem was much broader; that it 
concerned directly or indirectly, the country's entire 
citizenship indeed, the fate of our American civiliza- 
tion for it was found that America was dying on the 
land ! It would be but a poor service to the returning 
hero to invite him to take a share in a failing enter- 
prise, and it would amount to just that to offer nothing 
better than the old conditions of rural life. 

Secretary Lane's counselors decided to dig down to 
the roots of the subject, as one would dig down to the 
roots of a dying tree, and find out what had happened 
to the fabled "cornerstone of American democracy" 
the farm home. There was plenty of evidence that 
something was wrong. Without harping upon the 
dreary statistics regarding the marked tendency from 
rural to urban life a tendency that dates back to the 
first national Census of 1830, and has been increasing 



14 City Homes on Country Lanes 

ever since it is worth while to mention a few of the 
latest revelations on the subject: 

The abandonment of New England farms is a very 
old story; nevertheless, it is startling to realize that 
Massachusetts had three times as much land in culti- 
vation 100 years ago as now, and that 92.8 per cent 
of her entire population dwells in urban centers. Not- 
withstanding the general increase in land values during 
the past few years, there are still opportunities to ob- 
tain good land, most favorably situated with respect 
to great and growing markets, for one dollar to ten 
dollars per acre. And that within a few miles of the 
spot where the Pilgrims landed in 1620 ! 

It is only within recent years that the rural decline 
has been noticeable in the Middle West, but in the past 
ten years the number of farms decreased throughout 
that fertile region in every State except Wisconsin and 
Minnesota, while there the increase was slight. In the 
country as a whole the number of new farms fell off 
about 90 per cent; to be exact, from 10.9 per cent 
between 1900 and 1910, to 1.4 per cent between 1910 
and 1920. 

In Ohio, the number of habitable vacant farmhouses 
increased 61 per cent in a single year; from 18,000 
to 29,000 between June, 1919, and June, 1920. The 
number of men and boys on Ohio farms decreased 30 
per cent in the same period of time. 

In two years 46,000 men left the farms of Michi- 
gan, and the vacant places grew from 11,831 to 18,232 
making a total of 1,666,000 abandoned acres. In 
April, 1920, there were left on the farms of Michigan 



Digging to the Roots of a Dying Tree 15 

an average of but eleven men and boys for each ten 
farms. 

In New York State, 22,540 farms were abandoned 
in the last ten years. The State has a total popula- 
tion in excess of 10,000,000, but the number directly 
engaged in agricultural pursuits is only 380,000. 

Another disturbing feature of the rural situation is 
the increase of tenant farmers. Figures are not avail- 
able for the country as a whole, but in many of the 
richest agricultural States, more than half of the land 
is in the hands of such tenants, who have no stake of 
their own in the soil; hence, no interest in maintaining 
its fertility, or improving the standard of rural life. 

But all this bears only upon effects, not causes. The 
easiest explanation is that men prefer the town, because 
it pays big wages ; and that war-time wages were par- 
ticularly alluring. Doubtless the War accelerated the 
movement; but, since the movement preceded the War 
by at least 80 years, the cause must be sought else- 
where. So, at least, thought Secretary Lane and his 
advisers; and they determined to investigate the fa- 
vorite theme of poets and orators : the proposition that 
the farm home is the cornerstone of American democ- 
racy, and the source of all that is best in our national 
life. 

They started with the assumption that the drift 
throughout the nation from the country to the city 
was much greater than the tide in the opposite direc- 
tion; and that the "Back-to-the-land" movement, 
speaking in broad terms, had signally failed. They 
then went on to consider another assumption, which 



16 City Homes on Country Lanes 

represents an almost universal conviction that this 
tendency is anti-social and asked themselves the ques- 
tion: Is it so? If it is actually unfortunate for in- 
dividuals and society, then it must be such in lowered 

Health; 

Physical development; 
Mental development ; 
Spiritual development; 
Financial development; 
Human kindness; 
Social solidarity; 
Civic ideals; 
Patriotism; 

Ability to think clearly on public and social ques- 
tions ; 

Initiative and ability to carry out convictions ; 
Joy of living. 

As a first logical step, they employed an expert to 
make a study and analysis of such exact information, 
bearing upon their problem, as could be found in the 
great Library of Congress. The quest was not highly 
successful. While much interesting information was 
gathered, it was fragmentary, bearing upon typical 
localities which had been selected for social surveys, 
and not representative of the whole national field. 
Hence, it was suggestive rather than conclusive. It 
was necessary to supplement it by extensive studies, 
drawing from many different sources of information, 
much of it gathered from current newspapers and 
magazines; and much obtained from interviews with 



Digging to the Roots of a Dying Tree 17 

public men, sociologists and economists throughout the 
United States. 

The study as a whole was at least eager and pains- 
taking, and its conclusions so clearly in accord with 
obvious social tendencies as they must appear to the 
mind of any thoughtful observer, that there can be 
little doubt of their general acceptance. 

It is a natural and widespread belief that life in 
the open country is far more healthful than life in 
crowded towns. So it ought to be, and so it would be 
if country life were properly organized, and kept pace 
with modern scientific knowledge and thought. That, 
however, is precisely what it has not done, and precisely 
what it can not do, unless radically reformed. The 
city, on the other hand, is marching to the music of 
science, and keeping step with the Twentieth Century. 
This fact bears distinctly on several of the questions 
raised in Secretary Lane's inquiry; and especially on 
the question of public health. 

There are certain diseases indigenous to the old forms 
of country life -typhoid fever, for example, which is 
transmitted by bad water and flies. The remedy is a 
pure water supply and the abolition of flies at least 
from the homes. This is within the reach of science, 
which modern cities faithfully invoke, but which the 
old-fashioned farm generally ignores, together with 
other sanitary precautions essential to health preserva- 
tion. It follows, as a logical consequence that typhoid 
fever is a greater menace in the country than in the 
city. 

Impure milk is another medium for the transmission 
of certain diseases. To say that the milk supply is 



18 City Homes on Country Lanes 

generally purer in the city than in the country sounds 
like a paradox ; yet, it is in the city that a rigid system 
of inspection is applied ; it is there that science reaches 
out its hands to provide the strongest possible safe- 
guards for the public health in this respect. 

Malaria and kindred troubles are mosquito-borne. 
Their dominion is almost wholly confined to the rural 
districts. City homes outlaw them at least to a large 
extent. 

Sewerage is not an agreeable topic of polite conversa- 
tion ; yet, it has a most intimate relation to health, and 
it represents one of the most striking triumphs of 
modern science. That triumph is largely confined to 
cities. Indeed,- the lack of sanitary conditions in this 
respect is quite appalling in a large proportion of 
country homes; consequently, any form of disease that 
is influenced in any degree by the method employed in 
the disposal of sewage is more menacing in the country 
than in the town. 

Pneumonia often comes from poorly ventilated rooms 
and uneven temperature; intestinal diseases, including 
appendicitis, from badly-balanced food rations. Mod- 
ern housing conditions, and the systematic propaganda 
against preventable diseases, account for the fact that 
these serious troubles are likely to be less prevalent and 
less generally fatal in the town than in the country. 

Hookworm is distinctly rural in origin and prevails* 
in localities where a large part of the population has 
unsanitary toilet accommodations. The Rockefeller 
Foundation, in the course of social surveys in the 
South, found places where 50 per cent of the people 
had no facilities of the sort whatever; and one locality 



Digging to the Roots of a Dying Tree 19 

where 85 per cent was without them. Such instances 
are, of course, extreme ; yet, they could not conceivably 
occur at all under the health regulations of any city or 
good-sized town in America. 

In weighing the relative health conditions in urban 
and rural life, it must be considered that a very large 
part of the urban advantage in this respect is due to 
the mere fact of dense population. This is due in part 
to the element of "overhead expense"; in part to the 
fact that the city naturally attracts the highest talent 
in every profession. 

In this classification comes everything that requires 
the presence of hospitals, with prompt attendance of 
good physicians, and the care of trained nurses. Such 
institutions require conditions which the unorganized 
life of a sparsely settled countryside could never en- 
courage or support. There are, and there can be no 
exact data to show the drawback of country life in this 
respect ; but none are needed. The case is plain enough 
on its face. Fine hospitals, with the latest scientific 
equipment, can only exist in the midst of a considerable 
population. Whatever gain they represent in the mat- 
ter of human comfort and welfare is the gain of the 
city; whatever loss their absence entails, is the loss of 
the country. It is a matter that touches the health 
problem at many points. 

One of the sharpest points is that of maternity and 
of infant mortality. According to the best available 
statistics, one woman gives up her life for every 154 
babies born in America. In other words, almost as 
many women perished in giving birth to 4,800,000 ex- 
service men of the great World War, as the total num- 



20 City Homes on Country Lanes 

ber of our men killed in battle and dying from wounds. 
Except tuberculosis, it is the greatest single cause of 
death to women between 25 and 50 years of age. It is, 
therefore, a fundamental element of health. This is par- 
ticularly true because the vast proportion of the 4,- 
800,000 ex-service men were not injured at all ; whereas, 
when these particular men were born, practically every 
woman was confined to her bed from periods ranging 
from a few days to several weeks. Of those permanently 
crippled, either slightly or seriously, the number is far 
less than the number of women who were permanently 
injured in these 4,800,000 confinements. Many more 
women than service men were completely disabled. 

What has been said about hospitals, and the care of 
mothers immediately before and after childbirth, has a 
direct bearing on the subject of infant mortality. An- 
other item to be recorded on the side of city advantages, 
is the work of popular education concerning mother- 
hood which is constantly carried on. Among the poorer 
mothers in large cities, the city health department, Red 
Cross and other agencies, render a degree of help and 
advice that is not available to country mothers ; and in 
the large cities there are little mothers' leagues to which 
girls between the ages of 12 and 14 belong, and in which 
they receive instruction in the care and feeding of 
their little sisters and brothers, and pass it on to their 
mothers. 

The excessive infant mortality discovered in one sur- 
vey was summed up as being due to "the mother's 
ignorance of proper feeding, of proper care, of the 
simplest requirements of hygiene. To this all the other 
causes must be regarded as secondary." Surely this 



Digging to the Roots of a Dying Tree 21 

must be so, if there is anything at all in education re- 
garding the common duties of life, and any hope of 
raising the standard of efficiency in that respect. And 
it is the city that can do it is doing it far more than 
the country. It is a part of the organized life of the 
town which contrasts so sharply with the over-individ- 
ualistic life of the countryside. 

We see it again in the matter of nurses. In times of 
illness, it is usually difficult even to obtain household 
help, and nursing is often left to the unskilled hands 
of the older children, or of the neighbors and their 
children. Five millions of the best men and women have 
come into the world under these conditions. Sturdy 
mothers and noble children have survived the experi- 
ence; yet this circumstance is no more an argument 
against the modern scientific conditions now enjoyed by 
the city, and impossible to the old and discredited sys- 
tem of rural life, than the fact that Abraham Lincoln 
read his lessons by firelight is an argument against the 
use of the electric lamp. 

Not only has the city the advantage of fine and 
abundant hospitals, with their complete staffs of highly- 
trained physicians and nurses, as well as free clinics for 
the needy, but they also attract the ablest specialists in 
every line. Take dentistry (half our bodily ills are now 
traced to the teeth) and ask yourself if there is any 
comparison between the practitioners and facilities al- 
ways available in the city and those usually found in 
the country. Add to this the thorough inspection of 
teeth now quite generally made in city schools, and 
the laxity in that regard in many, if not most, country 
schools; and it is apparent at a glance that so far as 



22 City Homes on Coimtry Lanes 

this department of health is concerned, the city is 
far in advance. So with the oculist, and all other 
fields of specialization, the city has absorbed and holds 
in its firm grip the best of everything. And it scores 
heavily on the side of health for the city-born and city- 
reared against their brothers of the backward rural 
districts. 

It is popularly believed that rural life is most favor- 
able to physical development, but athletic instructors 
generally have come to the conclusion that it does not 
develop the body symmetrically; that certain muscles 
are exercised to fatigue, while other muscles are exer- 
cised insufficiently. The report on athletic exercises 
and organized play at the 1920 session of the National 
Country Life Conference in Chicago favored special 
types of athletic exercises in country schools on that 
account. 

The young of all animals, and particularly human 
beings, attain symmetrical development through play. 
City children now have their playgrounds and organized 
play efforts, while country children really play little 
and work a great deal. Probably there is more child 
labor on the farm than in all other industries combined. 
By that same token, there is less balanced physical de- 
velopment. 

It was hoped the record of physical rejections in 
the World War would throw a strong light on the rela- 
tive health of urban and rural communities. While the 
record is marvelously complete, it does not help much 
in this inquiry, for the reason that the Census unit of 
2,500 as the dividing line between urban and rural 



Digging to the Roots of a T>yvng Tree 23 

population was not adopted, but the local draft board 
unit of 25,000. Moreover, local districts often in- 
cluded portions of rural territory which were, therefore, 
rated urban. Such as it is, the record shows 528 de- 
fects per thousand among rural soldiers, against 609 
among the urban. A true division would almost cer- 
tainly have been in favor of city life, as it was in the 
Civil War. At that time, however, a vast majority of 
the people lived in rural districts, while now the major 
portion dwells in towns. 

A somewhat clearer light was thrown upon the sub- 
ject, when considered from another interesting stand- 
point that of comparative immunity from certain 
diseases after entering the Army. In four out of five 
instances the ultra-urban State of New York stood 
first, with the rural States last in every instance. Penn- 
sylvania and New England, preponderantly urban, also 
made an exceedingly good showing. This is not entirely 
conclusive, because of the racial element that enters 
into the equation more of the Eastern urban men 
being of foreign blood than of those from largely rural 
States. 

So far as Secretary Lane's inquiry shed light on 
those matters, it was strongly confirmatory of the city's 
claim to superiority on the side of public health and 
individual physical well-being. It is a superiority in- 
herent in the fundamental conditions of modern urban 
life. In a word, the drift from country to city is not 
unfortunate for society, from the standpoint of health. 

The initial point for every person who wants to 
make the most of himself is, of course, the schoolroom. 
Every worthy parent wishes his child to have the best 



4 City Homes on Country Lanet 

possible education within the limits of his opportunity. 
It is here we may appropriately begin our considera- 
tion of the effect of the cityward movement on the 
mental development of the American people. 

The efficiency of the Little Red Schoolhouse is a leg- 
end among us ; thence have come most of our statesmen, 
poets, orators, captains of industry the leaders of our 
national life. This was certainly true of the day in 
which a very large proportion of our population was 
rural, and before the organization of city life arose to 
the dignity of social science; but the slightest com- 
parison of educational facilities in country and town, 
as they exist to-day, will convince the reader that the 
ancient legend is no longer based upon facts. 

The rural child receives only about 65 per cent as 
much schooling as the city child. This is due to the 
slack attendance and shorter school session. The aver- 
age daily attendance in the country is 67.6 per cent ; 
in the city, 79.3 per cent. The school year in the 
former is 137.7 days, and in the latter 184.3 days. 
Conditions vary in different sections, but the rule runs 
true throughout the United States. City children, of 
course, usually live near the school building and have 
abundant means of cheap transportation when it is 
necessary to go any distance, while country children 
are widely scattered, and often with no means of trans- 
portation over poor roads. During long periods of bad 
weather they can not go at all. These conditions are 
perfectly obvious on the surface, and militate power- 
fully against the best education for rural children. Re- 
sults are reflected in the higher percentage of illiteracy 
in country districts. 



Digging to the Roots of a Dying Tree 25 

Educational results are largely determined by the 
quality of teaching. A study of urban and rural con- 
ditions on this score is strongly in favor of the city 
teacher. Country schoolma'ams serve, on an average, 
only about one year, against the average of 12 years on 
the part of the city schoolma'am. In the one case 
school-teaching is treated as a temporary expedient a 
stepping-stone to higher education or some other pro- 
fession, and often to marriage; in the other, it is re- 
garded as a permanent career. It requires no argu- 
ment whatever to demonstrate which condition is favor- 
able to the child. 

Salaries have something to do with the matter. 
These are considerably higher in town than in the 
country. This condition is governed somewhat by the 
inexorable rule of overhead expenses. It is the large 
school that can afford to pay the highest salaries be- 
cause the expense is divided among many more individ- 
uals ; consequently the higher rewards are held out by 
the larger schools, which are invariably in centers of 
population. Urban conditions are also much more 
favorable to the careful and thorough grading of 
schools, and the old-fashioned, one-room school can 
not begin to offer so much to the child as the graded 
school. Not only is the teacher overburdened with work 
in the one-room school, but she has no opportunity to 
specialize and become highly expert in any single de- 
partment of her work. Here, as elsewhere, the whole 
trend of our times favors the modern art of specializa- 
tion ; and this is a forbidden art for the country teacher 
in many instances. 

For the same reason vocational training, which has 



26 City Homes on Cowitry Lanes 

become one of the most valuable features of modern 
education, is difficult, or impossible, in all except the 
highest types of country schools. On the other hand, 
it is readily within the reach of the city school, with its 
large attendance, good salaries, and opportunity for 
careful grading. 

Investigation has disclosed a pitiable lack of library 
facilities in many rural schools throughout the United 
States, including some of the most advanced and pros- 
perous agricultural sections. Many instances were 
found where the total library stock did not exceed 50 
to 100 volumes, and where these were unchanged for so 
long as two or three years. City school libraries are 
far more adequate and enterprising, and they are sup- 
plemented by great public libraries which are open to 
the children. 

The same influence necessarily governs the character 
and extent of school buildings in the city and country. 
The Little Red Schoolhouse is picturesque, but fre- 
quently uncomfortable, inconvenient, unsanitary, and 
at least a generation behind the times. City school 
buildings, on the other hand, are generally the object 
of the greatest pride often of lavish expenditure, and 
sometimes the last word in architecture, convenience, 
beauty and sanitary arrangement. 

One reason that great numbers of men and women 
have left the country and gone to the big centers of 
population is because they are thereby enabled to give 
their children a far better education, and hence a 
better start in the race of life. It is idle to deny the 
facts, and equally idle to argue against the parental 
instinct that demands the best for its offspring. The 




Copyrignt by Harris and .t,wing, 1920, W ashington, D. C. 

FRANKLIN K. LANE 

Who fought for a great American Policy of Home-building on the Land, and whose 
ideals certain to prevail in time will enrich the lives of Future Generations. 



Digging to the Roots of a Dying Tree 27 

remedy lies in frank recognition of the fact, followed by 
fundamental and far-reaching changes on the side of 
country life. If such changes can not be made if 
the child reared in the country must be denied his right- 
ful chance for a good education and a fair start in life 
then country life is damned and doomed, and every- 
body who can possibly get there will go to the city. 
This is in full accord with the American spirit. Noth- 
ing is more vital to democracy than that childhood shall 
have its chance the best chance that money and genius 
can provide. 

If mental development begins in the schools, it does 
not end there. What are the comparative advantages 
and facilities of urban and rural people for keeping on 
with their education and abreast of the times? The 
city, of course, offers superior opportunities of every 
sort. And opportunity is all we can offer to any man. 
There are no statistics of much value to show to what 
extent the city man is disposed to avail himself of his 
manifest advantages, as compared with his country 
cousin. Whether the abundance and accessibility of 
libraries and reading-rooms, lecture halls, art galleries, 
clubs, and social organizations of all kinds broaden his 
mind and enlarge his outlook on life is largely a matter 
of speculation. It is certain, however, that it is far 
easier for the average man and woman to make the most 
of themselves in the way of mental development if living 
in town than if living under rural conditions as they 
average throughout the United States. 

For one thing, the better class of daily newspapers 
are great educators, and their circulation is overwhelm- 
ingly urban. 



28 City Homes on Country Lanes 

A fairer test is the paid subscription list of popular 
national periodicals weekly and monthly since these 
are equally accessible to city and country subscribers. 
A representative list makes the following exhibit : 

General magazine (low price), 24 per cent rural; 76 
per cent urban. 

General magazine (high price), 2 per cent rural; 98 
per cent urban. 

Popular fashion magazine, 38 per cent rural; 62 
per cent urban. 

Religious weekly, 6 per cent rural; 94 per cent 
urban. 

A famous humorous weekly, 2 per cent rural ; 98 per 
cent urban. 

A woman's monthly, 26 per cent rural; 74 per cent 
urban. 

A well-known literary weekly, 25.1 per cent rural; 
74.9 per cent urban. 

An outdoor journal, 17.6 per cent rural; 82.4 per 
cent urban. 

Famous boys' fiction weekly, 51 per cent rural; 49 
per cent urban. 

Prominent farm journal, 63 per cent rural; 37 per 
cent urban. 

These figures are based on the Census of 1910, when 
53.7 of the total population of the United States 
was rural a figure practically reversed by the Census 
of 1920. Thus the relative discrepancy is larger than 
the actual. It is worth while to add, as bearing on the 
relation of big cities to mental activity, that seven of 
the ten periodicals representing together a wide range 
of human interest, have more circulation in cities of 



Digging to the Roots of a Dying Tree 29 

1 00,000 and over than in all rural America, though the 
big cities had only 22.1 per cent of the nation's total 
population, against 53.7 per cent for the country dis- 
tricts. 

Even in the absence of such a searching national 
survey and analysis as might be desired, it is perfectly 
safe to conclude that the cityward trend is not unfortu- 
nate for society from the standpoint of mental develop- 
ment. 

When it comes to studying the relative spiritual de- 
velopment in town and country the wise man walks 
carefully. It is not a matter to be hastily determined 
by the weight of the visible evidence, since the things 
of the spirit are invisible. The highest spiritual ex- 
pression of which the world has ever heard came from 
the quiet places in Palestine. And we have the assur- 
ance that we shall lose God neither in the desert nor in 
the crowded thoroughfares of the great city. 

"Whither shall I go from Thy spirit, or whither shall I flee 
from Thy presence? 

"If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost 
parts of the sea, 

"Even there shall Thy hand lead me, and Thy right hand shall 
hold me." 

But if the measure of spiritual development is or- 
ganized religion there is no question about the superior- 
ity of urban life. There is hardly anything more 
pathetic than the state of the country church, viewing 
the subject as a whole. This fact is nowhere more keen- 
ly realized than in the councils of the great religious 
denominations. They have made repeated surveys in 
selected localities, all pointing the same way. One 
such survey covering three counties in northeast Mis- 



30 City Homes on Cowitry Lanes 

souri showed that 92 per cent of the country churches 
have pastors on one-fourth time; their average pay, 
$108 a year. Nineteen churches had been abandoned 
"simply died out." 

There is a record of one country church held in a 
hall (not located in Missouri) that adopted the desper- 
ate expedient of introducing one of "Fatty" Arbuckle's 
slapstick comedies to draw the crowd. (They came, 
too.) Half the comedy was presented between the 
minister's "thirdly" and "fourthly," but to get the 
other half the crowd had to remain until after the bene- 
diction. Considered merely from the standpoint of at- 
tendance, the j)lan was literally "a howling success." 

City churches, of course, simply because of the con- 
centration of wealth and population, attract the higher 
pulpit talent; have the finest music, both instrumental 
and vocal; house their activities in the largest, hand- 
somest and most comfortable structures, often equipped 
with the latest facilities for social as well as religious 
functions. In all these respects their advantage over 
rural conditions is so palpable, so painful, that it need 
not be dwelt upon. 

While the city church has not resorted to the roaring 
farce to attract an audience, it has sometimes employed 
moving pictures of sacred or purely educational char- 
acter, and doubtless with pronounced gain on the side 
of mental, if not of spiritual, progress. 

If the good-sized town or urban center can claim no 
conclusive superiority in a matter so clearly one of 
individual personal experience, and if we admit the full 
force of what Emerson said of his "sylvan dell," 
"When man in the bush with God may meet " 



Digging to the Roots of a Dying Tree 31 

it is still apparent that the cityward tendency is not un- 
fortunate for society, in the sense of spiritual develop- 
ment. 

The question of relative financial development under 
the conditions of rural and urban life, if considered 
from the standpoint of average earning power and 
apart from the increment in land values, presents no 
such difficulties as we found in the matter of spiritual 
development. 

City earnings, at least where labor is organized, are 
fairly high and tend upward; rural earnings are low 
and tend downward. In both cases pre-war condi- 
tions as to earnings and living costs should be the 
basis of comparison, since the war precipitated ab- 
normal wages and prices everywhere, and the process 
of readjustment is not complete and may not be for 
years. 

Between 1900 and 1914 the Federal Government, as 
well as various States and universities, conducted ex- 
tensive investigations to ascertain the amount of the 
farmer's income. One Federal investigation covered ten 
of the most important agricultural States, including 
the cotton sections of the South, the grain regions of 

the Middle West, the dairy districts of Wisconsin, and 

the diversified farms of Vermont. The official report 

concluded in these words : 

"Extensive investigations relative to the profits of 

farming indicate that the average labor income of the 

farmer probably differs little from ordinary farm 

wages." 

That is to say $25 a month or $300 a year. (Labor 

income, of course, is apart from income on investment, 



3 City Homes on Country Lanes 

but the latter is but 3 or 4 per cent in the best farming 
regions.) Government investigations in three repre- 
sentative areas Indiana, Illinois, and Iowa showed an 
average labor income of $408. In Indiana it was $310 ; 
in Illinois, $622; in Iowa, $291. Cornell University 
studied some of the most thriving agricultural districts 
in New York State, with this result: 

"The average owner received $423 as pay for his 
personal labor and management for a year; but there 
were wide variations from this amount. The common 
wages of a hired man in this region (pre-war) are $300 
to $350, with house rent, garden, wood and milk. 
Some of the men receive more. Roughly speaking, we 
may say that one-third of the owners made less than 
their hired men, one-third made about the same as the 
hired men, and one-third more than hired men." 

Practically the same results were found in the case of 
tenants. Whether owner, tenant, or hireling, the man 
on the land receives about the same pay for labor. The 
average capital requirement for a 160-acre farm in 
Indiana, Illinois and Iowa was found to be $30,606 
more than most men possess, or will ever possess. 

Diligent search has failed to reveal any figure as a 
basis for comparison of average urban income with 
average rural income. The income of urban people, of 
course, taking all elements into account, covers an 
immense range. Somewhere between the depths of pov- 
erty and the heights of affluence lies the sea level that 
one would wish to find on this side of the subject, as 
we found it on the rural side. 

There is very good reason for saying that the aver- 



Digging to the Roots of a Dyvng Tree 33 

age American income for 1917, taking every man, 
woman and child engaged in gainful occupations, falls 
somewhere around $1,250. This average means com- 
paratively little for our purpose, which is to ascertain 
the economic situation of the millions who left the 
farm to engage in city life. If comparatively few of 
them are in the millionaire class, probably hardly more 
are among those receiving the poorest pay. They were 
largely made up of the young, energetic and ambitious, 
equipped with a fair degree of education. They deliber- 
ately set out to improve their situation in life. To a 
large extent they are skilled mechanics, trained office 
people, small merchants, or professional men or women. 

A careful survey of 2,000 families in Chicago, taken 
at random from the city directory, gave $1,500 as the 
commonest household income. My own guess (and it is 
only a guess, from which the reader may dissent), is 
that the income of the element we have especially in 
mind averages somewhat above rather than below that 
figure. 

In the absence of such complete data as we would 
wish, the best we can do is to say this: The farm 
worker's labor income is $350 a year, plus rent, fuel, 
milk and vegetables. Let the city reader add the cost 
of those four items to $350, then subtract the sum from 
his jtotal income, and he will be able to compare his own 
economic lot with that of his rural brother. Probably 
it would not be far wrong to say that the sum so ob- 
tained would average about $1,000; nor to deduce the 
conclusion that the average city man is ahead by any- 
where from 50 to 100 per cent. 



S4s City Homes on Country Lanes 

If that be true, then it becomes quite clear that the 
cityward tendency is not unfortunate for society, from 
the standpoint of financial development. 

Now we pass right out to sea, so far as any hope 
of exact information is concerned. Of health, physical, 
mental, spiritual and financial development something 
may be learned from public records, though such data is 
by no means as comprehensive as could be desired. It 
is different when we come to consider the other elements 
of our problem the effect of the sweep of population 
away from the land on the character of our people with 
respect to human kindness, social solidarity, patriotism, 
capacity to think clearly on public and social questions, 
initiative and ability to carry out convictions, and, 
finally, joy of living. 

These are vital considerations. They go to the 
heart of our future civilization. They are closely 
related to the matter of education and economic pros- 
perity, since there can not be much doubt that a more 
general diffusion of knowledge and the comforts of 
life must react favorably on the character of individuals 
and communities. Then, too, there is the influence of 
environment of contact with large numbers and with 
varied racial and social groups to be taken into ac- 
count. 

The questions of human kindness and patriotism may 
be considered practically as one. Like spiritual de- 
velopment, they are largely matters of individual tem- 
perament and personal experience. It would be a very 
bold man who should undertake to say that rural life is 
deficient in either of these fine qualities of human char- 
acter. Indeed, on the side of kindness, there is a great 



Digging to the Roots of a Dying Tree 35 

deal to be said in favor of the neighborly relationship 
that prevails in the countryside as compared with the 
conditions of city life where a family scarcely knows the 
people in the next house or the next apartment, while 
those in the next block are as alien as the people of 
San Francisco or London to the people of New York. 

As we found with religion, the case is only clear as it 
pertains to organized effort. If the city answered more 
generously to Mr. Hoover's clarion call on behalf of the 
starving children of Europe, and contributed more 
largely to the needs of famine-stricken China, it was not 
because its population is inherently more charitable, 
but because it is far more readily "get-at-able" ; hence, 
more responsive to the "drive." But 

What is the effect of such an influence upon the city 
people? Do they, as a class, acquire the habit of giving 
freely? Do they thereby become more tender toward 
suffering humanity ? They hear great speakers appeal- 
ing to their sympathies and exhorting them to noble 
performance ; they absorb the same spirit through their 
daily newspapers ; they breathe an atmosphere of or- 
ganized mercy for the unfortunate; they are sur- 
rounded by public institutions that make every helpful 
provision for the weaker members of society. Do they 
thereby develop the quality of human kindness? And 
when the same potent influences are directed into pa- 
triotic channels, do city people respond with increased 
love of country ? On the other hand, does the lack of 
such intensive cultivation tend to reduce benevolent and 
patriotic impulses in rural districts? 

This branch of our inquiry is purely speculative; in 
the nature of the case, it provides no statistics. The 



36 City Homes on Country Lanes 

unquestioned fact that the city is the more liberal con- 
tributor to popular funds of all kinds would be true, 
if for no other reason, because wealth is concentrated 
in urban centers. It is quite certain, however, that 
there is nothing on the surface to indicate that the 
cityward tendency is unfortunate for society from this 
point of view. 

The question of social solidarity almost answers 
itself. If anything, the fabric of urban life is rather 
too solid as a whole, and more so in its group segrega- 
tion. If it is desirable, as often it is, to evoke the sense 
of community interest and develop community action it 
is more readily accomplished in the town of 2,500 and 
up than in scattered rural districts. 

Who think more clearly on public and social ques- 
tions, city or country people ? And which environment 
is more favorable to initiative and ability to carry out 
convictions? These questions, while not precisely 
similar, run on parallel lines. Both turn largely on 
mental alertness and range of information. If town 
folk live, on the whole, a larger and fuller life, coming 
more closely into contact with public questions and 
economic phenomena, is it not in them rather than in 
rural folk that we should logically expect the greater 
manifestation of intellectual activity, the clearer vision 
of social progress, the freer play of human feeling, the 
readier welcome to innovating thought of every kind? 
A study of new progressive movements in all depart- 
ments, if records were available, as they are not 
would almost certainly show that they came, as a rule, 
out of the ferment of city life. 

As to individual initiative and the power to carry 



Digging to the Roots of a Dying Tree 37 

it out, I happen to have seen it put to the test in the 
course of western development a number of times. 
Great changes have come in western methods of life, 
including life on the land, during the past forty years. 
Old industries have been revolutionized; new industries 
created. So, also with the institutions of social and 
civic life. And almost without exception leadership has 
come, if not from the city-born and bred, at least from 
the city-trained. These men brought keen minds, sharp- 
ened on the city grindstone. They brought a brood of 
new ideas that, in the view of the resident rural popu- 
lation, would "never work"; yet, they did "work," 
broadening the foundations of general prosperity, and 
adding enormously to the sum of individual and com- 
munity wealth. 

Old methods of irrigation, old kinds of crops, old 
ways of harvesting and marketing these were not good 
enough for the sharp-eyed, keen-brained men who had 
turned from the fierce rivalries of urban life to seek 
success on the soil. Neither were the old schools, 
churches, homes and hotels good enough for them. 
They craved better things. And, with a swiftness and 
thoroughness that made the old rural folk gape with 
amazement, they brought better things to pass. And, 
along with their progressive horticulture, they took 
large doses of progressive politics. 

Without the support of statistics (dry at best, and 
often misleading) but with faith founded on wide ob- 
servation, I can say that human initiative loses nothing 
from urban experience. 

Finally, we come to the interesting and vital question : 
Which is better for the average person, the country 



38 City Homes on Country Lanes 

or the good-sized town, from the standpoint of mere 
joy of life? Apart from all other considerations, do 
the millions who have left the countryside to make their 
homes in towns, especially in the big modern cities to 
which the larger portion have gone, get more satisfac- 
tion for their social instincts, more downright enjoy- 
ment out of the every-day experience of life, in conse- 
quence of that change? 

The mere fact of the steady and ever-growing trend 
in that direction goes far in the way of an affirmative 
answer, because, after all, happiness is the great desid- 
eratum of human existence. All the other factors in 
our problem health, earning power, mental and spir- 
itual development, and so on are valuable as they 
contribute to the one great end, which is the joy of 
living. 

From the standpoint of interest and variety, the 
thrill of the great town is by no means imaginary. 
More and more with every passing year civilization 
masses its choicest things, along with its worst, in the 
big centers of population. Its energies and capital are 
bent upon making the life of the city an even more 
irresistible magnet than now. There are no bounds to 
the municipal ambition. Science and art and endless 
millions of dollars minister to that aspiration, which 
yearly becomes more real. 

Consider the people's playgrounds, and, to make it 
concrete, one of the most adorable creations of munici- 
pal genius achieved from what once seemed the most 
unpromising raw material Golden Gate Park in San 
Francisco. 

Nature made it a desert of shifting sands ; man con- 



Digging to the Roots of a Dying Tree 39 

verted it into a paradise of beauty, comfort and utility. 
To-day it is the joy of the multitude; the pride of a 
great democracy ; the meeting ground where all social 
distinctions disappear for one blessed day in an atmos- 
phere of universal good will, for these lawns and flowers 
and trees, these smiling lakes and winding roads, these 
Dutch windmills, ponderously turning with the Trade 
Wind, these effigies of the great, holding the precious 
Past in firm hands of bronze, these wonders of the 
world's zoology, these museums bursting with the treas- 
ures of Art and Science assembled from the far corners 
of the earth these belong to all, to our common hu- 
manity, as much as the sky that bends above them, as 
much as the sunshine and the tonic air. 

And this is wealth, spiritual wealth the very bread 
of life! 

Go there for the band concert Sunday afternoon and 
sit on the comfortable benches under the trees with ten 
thousand enthralled music lovers about you other 
thousands within hearing on the wide lawns. The* 
Municipal Band* backed by a massive sounding board, 
faces the throng. Over them, two great flags unfold 
in the breeze. You see them, and you are thrilled 
they mean so much ! One is the starry flag, planted on 
the western border of the Republic ; the other, the glori- 
ous Bear Flag of California. You think of the Argo- 
nauts yes, and of San Francisco, the city that rose on 
stepping-stones of its dead past in three brief years, 
meanwhile singing a song of "The Finest Ruins." 

The golden hours pass in an atmosphere that may 
only be described as one of genuine spiritual exaltation. 
You are lifted out of yourself, out of the sordid things 



40 City Homes on Country Lanes 

of every-day life ; you are thrilled through and through. 
Is it the music? The setting? Not wholly, though both 
are fine. More than anything else, it is the presence of 
the multitude, of massed humanity. It is the subtle ex- 
pression of the gregarious instinct, colored with a con- 
sciousness of the divine. 

My point is that the experience is possible only to 
urban life. It requires people, masses of people; it 
requires money, millions of money; it requires lofty 
idealism, based on deep concern for the common wel- 
fare and happiness. And these impulses, I insist, are 
the product of organized municipal life, rather than of 
the unorganized and severely individualistic forms of 
a rural life that is passing away. Let it go the sooner 
the better! 

I have touched here, it is admitted, on a high point 
of city life, which is by no means one long Sunday in a 
park with band concerts. That, however, is but a 
single feature of a way of life that is replete with at- 
tractions appealing to the spirit; with deep satisfac- 
tions for the hearts of average men and women. 

The big department store is about equal to the old 
county fair as an entertainment, and considerably more 
up to date. Theaters, restaurants, lectures, movies, 
occasional great pageants even the frequent thrilling 
passage of fire engines through crowded streets add 
to the zest and charm of life. Those who can spend 
freely get the best of it, perhaps, yet everybody drinks 
at the fountain of city life. Even to mingle with the 
throng is somewhat satisfying, for we resemble "Helen's 
Babies" and like to "see the wheels go 'round." The 



Digging to tht Roots of a Dying Tree 41 

poorest can see the swift revolutions of the city wheels. 
As a penniless derelict remarked: "Anyhow, I can read 
the billboards and see what's going on!" 

There is, of course, a very charming side of rural 
life, and one that must be preserved if civilization is to 
remain sweet and wholesome. But millions have turned 
away from it. "The proof of the pudding is the eating 
thereof." Millions born to country pudding have 
shown their marked preference for city desserts. 

No man of our time has done so much to keep alive 
true love of country life as Ray Stannard Baker, or 
"David Grayson," as he delights to call himself in his 
rural moods. He happens to be one of my most valued 
friends, and I shall later make use of his actual experi- 
ence to demonstrate my own philosophy of the coming 
life on the land. 

We have now examined the relative advantages of 
urban and rural life from a number of different stand- 
points. Our finding is in harmony with the obvious drift 
of the times. From the Census of 1830 to that of 1920, 
the race between country and town as rival claimants for 
the favor of a majority of our people has gone cease- 
lessly on. Decade after decade the city has rushed 
ahead, the country fallen back, until by the latest 
count the supremacy passes to the city. A majority 
of our hundred million people now dwell in town. 

Why? Because 

A man can make more of himself in the city than 
in the country ; can earn more money ; do better for his 
children ; live in better surroundings ; drink deeper from 
the cup of human happiness. The city draws into its 



42 City Homes on Country Lanes 

insatiable maw the best of all the country produces 
men and food alike. 

But let it be understood that in all I have said I am 
speaking of rural life as it is, not as it might be not, 
please God, as it shall be. 



CHAPTER II 

THE LEADING OP THE FALSE GOD "PRODUCTION" 

ANEW view of the decline in American rural 
population, and the continued piling up of the 
people in urban centers, has begun to gain 
currency. It has found able spokesmen. One of the 
most persuasive is Dr. Rudolph M. Binder, head of the 
sociological department of the University of New York. 
In a very notable interview, he said: "America only is 
following other industrial countries in its tendency to 
group the larger number of its inhabitants in the cities. 

"In Belgium and in England this period was passed 
long ago ; Germany knew it about 1910. It is the inevi- 
table drift of all States undergoing transition from 
agricultural to industrial conditions. 

"Normally every country must keep a sufficient per- 
centage of its population in the rural districts to pro- 
vide enough food for the whole population. This per- 
centage varies according to the state of civilization of 
a country. In the province of Bengal, India, there TV as 
until recently 90 per cent of the total population in 
country districts. 

"Those people, because of primitive implements and 
transportation, were able to produce just about enough 
food for themselves. England, at the other extreme, is 
able to maintain approximately 8 per cent of her people 
in urban districts. 

43 



44 City Homes on Country Lanes 

"In our own country we have had a preponderantly 
large percentage of population in the country districts 
as long as means of production were comparatively 
simple. 

"With improvements of implements a smaller per- 
centage of people was needed to produce food for the 
whole population. This percentage has grown smaller 
with development of implements, latest of which is the 
tractor. It has been figured that whereas production 
of a bushel of wheat once took two hours, the time in 
1920 was reduced to eight minutes. I venture to say 
that time now is shortened by half. 

"It is interesting to note notwithstanding over 51 
per cent of our people lived in urban districts, the 
largest bumper crop in our history was produced last 
year." 

In his statement, which disposed of any "back to the 
farm" movement as impossible, Dr. Binder said if those 
thrown out of their jobs in the fields by highly devel- 
oped machinery should attempt to remain in rural dis- 
tricts, producing crops far above the demand, prices 
would be forced so low that farming would cease to pay. 

He went on : 

"Our capacity for consuming food is limited. But 
our capacity for consumption of manufactured articles, 
such as erstwhile farmers turn out instead of vegetables 
and fruits, is practically unlimited. Three or four 
square meals a day is our limit, but we may change 
our coats a dozen times ! We may eat only a dollar's 
worth of food daily, yet we spend a thousand dollars 
for a single table!" 



The Leading of the False God "Production" 45 

About the physical aspect of the cityward movement, 
Dr. Binder had this to say : 

"Time was when the city seemed a regular graveyard 
for her beings. But hygiene and sanitation have been 
introduced ; statistics of the recent war proved that 
our city boys are equal to the country product in 
vitality, while surpassing them in mentality." 

With his statement concerning the physical and men- 
tal results of urban life I am, of course, in perfect 
accord; it is precisely what we found in the preceding 
chapter. But, with the rest of his statement both as 
to spirit and as to facts, but especially as to spirit 
I profoundly disagree. 

First, the facts: Machinery is relied upon to make 
good the deficiency of man-power on the farm. America 
has long had the advantage of superior agricultural 
implements and machinery ; and, as a consequence, leads 
the world in production per man. But she lags far 
behind in production per acre, possibly because the 
machine can not quite take the place of the man in 
getting the soil to do its best. In other words, we may 
be dying on the land economically, as well as socially 
and spiritually, because of an overdose of machinery. 
At any rate, until labor-saving devices bring our per- 
acre production much nearer the European standard 
than it is now, we cannot safely disregard the constant 
loss of man-power on the land and rely on machinery 
to take its place in the vital matter of food production. 

We saw that Michigan lost 46,000 men from her 
farms in two recent years ; that she now has an average 
of only eleven men and boys for each ten farms. Is 
it certain is it even conceivable that machinery has 



46 City Homes on Cowntry Lanes 

been invented to perform all the varied farm tasks 
formerly done by those vanished hands? Even if so, 
are there men and boys enough left to run the machines ? 
May not Michigan, like Massachusetts, soon have less 
rural people than England, with the 8 per cent that 
Dr. Binder regards as the hall-mark of her civilization? 
And, by the way, England would soon starve with- 
out the food that flows from her overseas dominions 
the flow of which Germany nearly stopped with her 
submarines. The cost of her enormous Navy is part 
of the price England pays for the glorious privilege 
of agricultural isolation. 

We saw that in one short year Ohio lost 30 per cent 
of her men and boys from the farm, while the number 
of habitable farmhouses increased 61 per cent. At 
that rate, another two years would leave her farms 
practically bare. Who will buy and operate the ma- 
chinery when there is literally "nobody home"? 

In three of the six years from 1914 to 1920, despite 
the enormous stimulation of war prices and wages, 
per-capita production fell below the pre-war period; 
and we had more and better farm machinery in use 
than ever before. The area of land in cultivation in 
the entire country in 1921 is 5 per cent less than in 
1920; a rate of decrease which would wipe out Ameri- 
can agriculture in 20 years. 

The average annual increase in population is 2 
per cent; our total area of cultivated lands (1920 
Census), 478,451,750 acres. On the basis of present 
production per acre it would be necessary to increase 
the area of cultivated lands 6,369,403.17 acres every 
year; or, 17,450.41 acres every day, in order to main- 



The Leading of the False God "Production" 47 

tain our total agricultural output at its present stand- 
ard. If the nation is to go on growing, while the 
farmers continue to abandon their fields for the crowded 
streets of the city, it is obvious that the inventors and 
manufacturers of machinery that is to supplant the 
human race must work overtime. 

The child-like faith of those who declare that ma- 
chinery may safely be relied upon to feed our peo- 
ple and sustain our export trade is buttressed by 
no facts and figures. It is not thus with the friends 
of reclamation and land settlement the champions 
of the three-century-old policy of continental con- 
quest that made America what it is to-day. One of 
the most enlightened of these champions, Douglas Wo 
Ross, C. E., has recently said: 

"Assuming a rate of increase of 15 per cent per 
decade for the next 20 years, as against 16 per cent 
for the one just ended, and 21 per cent for the one 
next preceding, the population of the United States 
will be about 140,000,000 by 1940; and assuming an 
increase of 25 per cent per decade in our urban popu- 
lation, which is considerably less than the average since 
1900, about 60 per cent, or 85,000,000 of these people 
will be living in towns and cities, with 55,000,000 in the 
country an increase of less than 4,000,000 in the pres- 
ent rural population." 

And Mr. Ross estimates that merely to maintain the 
present balance of urban and rural population, as dis- 
closed by the latest census, will demand 130,000,000 
new acres of cultivated land in the next 20 years. 

Mr. Sheldon S. Cline consulted the highest authorities 
of the Department of Agriculture at Washington, in 



48 City Homes on Cowntry Lanes 

February, 1920, asking such searching questions as 
the following: 

"Is the great industrial structure which America is 
erecting in danger of toppling over because there is 
not beneath it the foundation of an adequate and as- 
sured food supply? 

"Must the cost of living mount higher and ever 
higher because farm production is diminishing, while 
the population of cities and industrial centers con- 
stantly increases? 

"Is the time approaching when the United States 
must depend upon overseas imports of staple food- 
stuffs, and, therefore, be at the possible mercy of an 
enemy in war? 

"Is it possible, in short, that this country may know 
that fear of famine which always has Europe in its 
grip, and which was one of the chief underlying causes 
of the greatest of all wars?" 

Never before were such questions asked in respect 
to America. A few years ago they would have con- 
victed any journalist of mental incompetency. To-day 
they are seriously entertained by those whose fingers 
are on the pulse of American agriculture, and who 
have begun to count that pulse, as a physician counts 
the pulse of a very sick man. 

Mr. Cline was told that for the first time in history 
"America sees the approach of a condition like that 
which has kept Europe in agony for a century the 
pressure of population on food supplies; that while 
we are yet unconscious of it, and still less of its causes, 
it has started gnawing at our vitals, and in the absence 
of a remedy, will spread rapidly." 



The Leading of the False God "Production" 49 

The conclusion reached by the highest Government 
authority is that, allowing for all the machinery and 
improved methods we have or are likely to have, another 
15 years will see America absolutely dependent upon 
the outside world for food. To quote Mr. Cline: 

"Fifteen years is the period of grace given us, un- 
less conditions change materially, before we will become 
dependent upon overseas imports of bread and meat 
and other staple foodstuff s. 

"Fifteen years before the peril of famine may hang 
like a black shadow over the land! 

"Fifteen years before keeping the ocean-ways open 
to our food ships may be vital to our national life, 
calling for armaments which would be an ever-increas- 
ing burden ! 

"And it is fifteen years we have in which to evolve 
and put in operation an agricultural policy which shall 
save us from the fate of Europe." 

Fifteen momentous years, big with the fate of Ameri- 
can civilization ! 

So far as the "facts are concerned, the answer to the 
new school of thought that sees nothing unfortunate 
in the rotting away of our rural foundations, is that 
they are not facts. Even from the standpoint of pro- 
duction, machinery is not now making good the loss 
of man-power on the farm; machinery is not now pro- 
viding a barrier between our people and prohibitive 
cost of living; machinery is not now preserving the 
nation against the danger of dependence on foreign 
food supplies within the next two decades. In the 
judgment of those who are in the best position to form 



50 City Homes on Cowitry Lanes 

an intelligent opinion, the day is remote when ma- 
chinery will be equal to these demands. Those who 
hold the contrary view represent a mistaken and dan- 
gerous philosophy. If it became prevailing public 
opinion, it would speedily create a greater menace to 
America's position in the world, a greater menace to 
the continued independence of her people, than hostile 
fleets lying without her ports, or hostile armies march- 
ing across her soil. We should overwhelm the fleets 
and defeat the armies, but an influence that undermines 
the character of our citizenship is an influence which, 
if permitted to work out to logical conclusions, would 
destroy the basis of our free institutions. And that 
would be the end of America as it exists to-day. 

Those who feel otherwise are following a false god 
the god of Material Production. Wrong as to their 
facts, they are infinitely more so in the spirit of their 
contention, which would sacrifice all other good to a 
single consideration. They would fill the nation's 
stomach at the cost of the nation's soul; though not, 
pf course, with conscious intent. They have convinced 
themselves that the people can be fed by machinery, 
while everybody lives in town, wearing "a dozen coats 
a day," and dining from "$l,000-tables." How average 
folks are to get the price of the coats and tables 
whether by socialism or not they fail to state; but, 
if the time shall ever come when we depend on machines 
for food, it will also be time for the people to resume 
the ownership of the land and to acquire the ownership 
of the machines. On no other terms could democracy 
survive in America. 

Production is not the first, but the secondary con- 



The Leading of the False God "Production" 51 

sideration in any properly conceived scheme of life. 
The first consideration is the independent home on 
the land, which may, or may not, be a farm home. The 
point is that we want a landed citizenship, rooted in 
the real proprietorship of the country, and bound to 
it by the strongest ties of interest and affection. The 
loss of the family hearthstone carries a deep menace to 
the future of our institutions. Under the leadership 
of the false god, Production, we are going fast and far 
in that direction. This tendency should be reversed 
rather than encouraged. 

True, we must be fed; but man does not live by 
bread alone. It is neither wise nor necessary that we 
should be fed under a system of agriculture that de- 
stroys the home on the land, abolishes popular pro- 
prietorship, creates a nation of tenants, cripples indi- 
vidual initiative, shackles the spirit of family inde- 
pendence, and degrades the character of our citizen- 
ship. These are the swift and sure consequences of 
rural depopulation on one hand, and the growth of 
congested cities on the other. 

It by no means follows that machinery can be ignored 
as a factor in agricultural production. Doubtless in- 
ventive genius will go forward in that field, as in all 
other departments of civilization. Whatever it can 
do cheaper and better than human hands, machinery 
will do in the future, as in the past, and on a constantly 
expanding scale. But, at whatever cost, it must be 
made subordinate to the higher good of humanity, as 
we shall see in subsequent chapters. 

We have entered upon a critical period in American 
history, and in nothing more so than on the side of our 



52 City Homes on Cowntry Lanes 

rural civilization, to which the institutions of our urban 
life are now closely related. We can follow no farther 
the false god of materialism, as represented by the 
complacent philosophy which subordinates all the other 
interests of society to the one thought of production, 
without imminent peril to the most precious ideals of 
American life. 

What profiteth a nation, any more than a man, to 
gain the whole world and lose its soul ? And that is the 
stake the soul of America embodied in the homes 
of her people, with all the elements of human freedom, 
of social welfare, of intellectual and spiritual growth, 
that cluster about the family hearthstone. 



CHAPTER III 

"A PLAGUE ON BOTH YOUR HOUSES" 

THE truth of the matter is that neither rural 
nor urban life, as now organized, meets the test 
of American ideals, as mentioned in the previous 
chapter. 

We have seen how rural life, speaking broadly of 
average conditions throughout the nation, fails to meet 
the test. It fails alike on the economic, the social, 
the intellectual, and the spiritual sides. In all these 
respects it must undergo a thorough, though doubtless 
gradual, process of reorganization before it can meas- 
ure up to the highest ideals of Twentieth Century 
America. 

City life, and especially the life of the great city 
again speaking in broad terms supplies a more inter- 
esting experience, and yields more satisfaction to aver- 
age humanity. Yet, the city, too, falls very far short 
of meeting the highest test. With all its advantages 
in the way of scientific hygiene and sanitation, of 
schools, hospitals, public parks, opportunities for rec- 
reation and amusement of every sort it yet fails, 
when considered from the standpoint of ideal American 
citizenship. 

What we want is the largest measure of individual 
freedom consistent with the general progress and wel- 
fare of society. This high element of citizenship is 

53 



54 City Homes on Cowntry Lanes 

more and more imperiled by the conditions of urban 
life. 

Almost everybody lives in rented premises, paying 
tribute to a landlord, and becoming the victim rather 
than the beneficiary of the increment in land values 
their presence creates. The widest possible diffusion 
of home-ownership is one of the essentials of a whole- 
some national existence. City life, as now organized, 
holds out no hope in this respect. Already, in some of 
the greater cities, 95 per cent of the population is 
utterly landless ; and, in the sense of any security of 
tenure, utterly homeless. It is a condition that strikes 
at the roots of human freedom. 

Almost everybody works for wages, and is thus de- 
pendent on the enterprise, the life, the fortune even 
the whim of some one else, for a means of livelihood. 
This also is a condition which makes against freedom, 
even in the days of youth and strength. When middle 
age is passed, and old age begins to loom upon the 
horizon, the carking thought of uncertainty for the 
future becomes like "the pestilence that walketh in dark- 
ness ; the destruction that wasteth at noonday'* ; a 
veritable "terror by night." 

There can be no true freedom, no abiding happiness 
and content, without some measure of security of life. 
The family that does not own the roof over its head; 
that has no control of the occupation, or employment 
on which it depends for daily bread, is living in a state 
of insecurity, and facing an unknown future. Such 
is the condition of a very large proportion of all of the 
millions that have been absorbed by the resistless forces 
of city life. Let the cup of their daily enjoyment be 



"A Plague on Both Your Houses" 55 

never so full, these bitter dregs lie at the bottom of it. 

The average urban family is entirely defenseless 
against rising living costs in the matter of rent and 
food. Rent is based on land values; land values rise 
with increasing population. The price of food is closely 
related to the growing disproportion between con- 
sumers and producers, resulting from urban congestion. 

Completely detached from the soil, with a long line 
of transportation agencies and trafficking middlemen 
between the farm and their own tables, the swarming 
city populations stand as helpless before the cost of 
living as an unarmed mob before an army of profes- 
sional soldiers, trained and equipped to the minute. 
They can only pay the price or go without. Every 
element of the problem lies far beyond their reach. 

These are not the only drawbacks of city life. It 
tends to wither, if not to destroy, personal initiative, 
just as it hampers and limits the spirit of individual 
independence. While it is doubtless true that the city 
offers many interesting tasks, and opens the door to 
many channels of promotion, it is equally true that the 
vast majority of workers in factories, department 
stores and offices, feel the deadening effect of a merely 
mechanical routine. They are cogs in a big machine, 
often dealing with only a very small portion of the 
process that goes on in the establishment as a whole. 

To shake them out of this lethargy, born of the 
steady tramp of factory, store and office drill; to re- 
store their initiative, and with it their creative facul- 
ties; to stir the passion for new adventure; to give 
them a measure, at least, of individual independence, 
a measure of control over their cost of living; to make 



56 City Homes on Country Lanes 

them proprietors of the ground on which they dwell, 
instead of mere tenants at will and thus the benefi- 
ciaries, rather than the victim of land values created 
by the presence, the labors and the investment of 
society as a whole; to do all this, while enabling them 
still to retain the unquestioned advantage of city life, 
including their hold on the payroll this is the inspir- 
ing task that awaits the genius of American citizenship. 
'This, too, is the logical beginning of a process which, 
before the present century shall have passed into his- 
tory, will effect a far-reaching transformation in the 
whole rural life of the nation. For man's passion for 
the soil is to be born again. He is to revive his primary 
love of nature and all its works ; to renew his com- 
panionship with Mother Earth, and thereby to renew, 
to broaden, and to sweeten his own existence. 

As in the past half-century the country has been the 
nursery of the city, so in the next half-century, the 
city will be the nursery of the country. The movement 
will not be "Back to the Land," but Forward to better 
things than men have ever known in the past. Pro- 
duction, important as it is, will be merely incidental to 
the evolution of higher forms of social and economic life, 
with a great deal of emphasis on family life its hearth- 
stone restored ; its altars relighted. 

These things will come to pass, because they are 
essential to the preservation and continued development 
of democracy in America. 



CHAPTER IV 

GETTING THE RURAL SAVOR INTO CITY LIFE 

I wish you joy of this and that; 

The new look from a path's quick turn, 

The sunshine on the long home street, 

The unexpected fern; 

I wish you power to draw delight 

Because a bow blows so or so; 

I wish you joy of everything 

Of all the living, singing lands, 

And of the smiling, sleeping sky 

That no one understands 

Zona Gale. 

TURNING now from the negative to the positive 
side of our subject from the god-of-things-as- 
they-are to the god-of-things-as-they-ought-to- 
be let us consider to what extent it is possible to put 
country scents into city air. Our quest is for a way 
of life that may be brought within reach of the multi- 
tude, giving them a richer and fuller experience than 
they now enjoy. It must be an experience compre- 
hending more than creature comforts ; more, even, than 
social satisfaction and intellectual opportunity. It 
must square with the great ideals of American life. 

Now, there are some people in this world so fortu- 
nately circumstanced that they determine their own 
way of life; they do as they please. Often they hap- 
pen to be people of taste and refinement, blessed with 
a liberal education, since those advantages naturally 

57 



58 City Homes on Country Lanes 

go with large means. It will be interesting, and perhaps 
illuminating, to inquire what such people have found 
to be the ideal way of living. 

Up to a generation ago, this element largely pre- 
ferred the city, with a strong leaning toward brown- 
stone fronts. Their summers were spent at great re- 
sorts, in hotels or rented cottages. They were of the 
town, townish; and almost wholly lacking in rural 
affiliations of any sort. But, in the last two or three 
decades, the mental attitude of the extremely well-to-do 
has radically changed. It happened about the time we 
began to build good roads, run automobiles, and de- 
velop other means of rapid transit. These well-to-do 
people then discovered a new love of rural life. To have 
a country home then became the proper thing. In 
many instances the city mansion has been disposed of, 
or torn down to make room for a skyscraper or an 
apartment house, and the place in the country has be- 
come the real home of the family, which retains in 
town only an option on desirable hotel rooms, or pos- 
sibly an apartment among the cliff-dwellers. 

These comfortable folk, who do as they please be- 
cause they have the price, have decided that the way 
to achieve the utmost satisfaction is to be of the city, 
but not m the city. They are distinctly metropolitan 
in their business interests, and in a part of their social 
interests, as well; but they have learned that the way 
to get the most out of the city is to come to it each 
morning, after a restful night among the sights and 
sounds of the country; and that the way to get the 
most out of the country is to go to it each night after 



Getting the Rural Savor into City Life 59 

a strenuous day in town, to discover its beauties afresh, 
with a little shock of joyful surprise. 

My proposition is this: If that is a good thing for 
some of the people, and particularly for those who 
can have the best there is in life, then it is a good 
thing for vastly more of the people who would do it 
if they could. And to make it possible for them to 
do it is a part, and a very urgent part, of the job 
awaiting the builders of America. 

It is perfectly true, of course, that there are many 
who would not care for that sort of thing. Herbert 
Quick has given us an exceedingly serviceable phrase, 
when he speaks of the "city-minded" and then of the 
"country-minded." I venture to say that few people 
realize to what extent the country-minded predominate 
among the dwellers in great cities. They are legion 
these men and women who turn wistful eyes from dens 
in office buildings, from caves in apartment houses, 
toward the open spaces dreaming that some day they 
will have a little home of their own. They send for 
seed catalogues and dream; attend poultry shows 
and dream; observe fat squabs in the market and 
dream; make furtive sketches in idle moments of un- 
built cottages and unplanted gardens and dream. 
Some of them, but by no means all, came originally 
from the country, and look back lovingly to the scenes 
of their childhood. Whether country or city bred, they 
all thrill to the thought of the vine and fig tree, of 
the family hearthstone that survives the mutability of 
the years. The thing is in the blood of the race. It is 
primal instinct, of which men are daily reminded by 



60 City Homes on Country Lanes 

their metropolitan environment. To walk the pave- 
ment is to think of pressing the turf. To get a glimpse 
of sunrise, or of the reddening evening sky across the 
waste of city roofs, is to dream of the place where the 
whole glorious spectacle is unfurled to them who have 
eyes to see. 

Yes, the country-minded constitute an innumerable 
caravan in all the big cities of the land. If, like the 
people in easy circumstances, they could do as they 
wish, they would take the cream of the city and the 
cream of the country, leaving the skim-milk for those 
who like that sort of thing; or, perhaps, can do no 
better. They are withheld from the satisfaction of 
this natural instinct almost entirely by economic con- 
siderations. They are attached to the city payroll 
and would not dare to let go. Neither have they the 
capital nor the genius for organization requisite to 
attain the better way of life. 

Municipality, State and nation know there is an 
unsolved "housing problem." They do not know that 
there is latent in the hearts of men a desire and a 
spirit that would cover the earth with genuine homes 
if it could but find inspiring leadership. But this is 
getting ahead of our story. 

"David Grayson" as I have hinted in earlier pages 
is the voice of the landless multitude pent up in city 
quarters, converted into something approximating 
human jam twice each day, as it goes to and from 
its work on street-cars, yet ever dreaming of the joys 
of the countryside. No man since Thoreau has done 
so much to put spiritual vision into the common life 
in relation to rural experience. He is, however, not a 



Getting the Rural Savor into City Life 61 

type of rural citizenship, but a luminous example of 
that rich and satisfying blend of city and country life 
that is the essence of what I am saying. He divides his 
time between New York and Washington, London and 
Paris, on the one hand, and, on the other, his dear 
little farm in the Connecticut Valley of Massachusetts. 

It is my theory, and also my conviction, that his 
home in the valley would not seem half so sweet, nor 
his senses half so keen, if he did not come there from 
the noise and bustle of the town to hoe a row of corn 
while listening to the music of the birds and breathing 
the incense from the earth; to walk beneath the shade 
of his trees; to smile, as he hears the cackle of the* 
hens, or the cheerful munching of the old mare at her 
meal ; to chat with Harriet on the porch, or drink 
from the brook before he sits down to stretch his legs. 
"There is a poem in stretched legs," he tells us. That 
is a poem, I think, born of Broadway, as much as of 
the corn-rows and the new ditch across the meadow. 
I insist upon full credit for Broadway! 

Let me drive it in, because it is a vital point : With- 
out Broadway, the valley farm would not be the joy 
it is; nor would Broadway be so interesting, so sig- 
nificant, without the valley farm. This is the verdict 
of the fortunate who may do as they choose. Is it not, 
then, sound gospel for the rest of us? 

To take another example : A big New York business 
man wrote a magazine article that attracted wide at- 
tention, though the theme, "Farming vs. Golf," seemed 
simple enough. He had been in the habit of playing 
golf (and naively insists that he was a pretty fair 



68 City Homes on Cowitry Lanes 

player, too), but when the War came on it suddenly 
occurred to him that he might discover a form of 
exercise of more creative character possibly a more 
valuable contribution to his country's need than pok- 
ing little white balls across a field. 

He bought an abandoned farm in the hills of West- 
ern Connecticut and proceeded to raise food for his 
family and the public. He tells us that his entire in- 
vestment was not much in excess of the entrance fee 
required by one of the exclusive golf clubs near New 
York; yet the abandoned farm turned out to be a 
paying investment. That, however, was the smallest 
of his satisfactions. He turned over a new page in 
his experience. He was like the colored girl, who, 
speaking of the dinners provided by her young man, 
said: "He found an appetite on me I didn't know I 
had." 

The successful man of large affairs became an en- 
thusiastic farmer. He went after the record as to 
quality and quantity of his crops, and returned from 
the county fair bedecked with blue ribbons. He found, 
moreover, better exercise and more mental diversion in 
reclaiming these abandoned acres than he had ever 
known on the golf field. He discovered that there was 
no such food as the food of his own raising; and while 
he spends many months of the year in his city home, 
even there he is followed by a stream of fresh eggs, 
milk and fat chickens, vegetables, fruit and preserves, 
from the farm. Listening to him as he talks, one would 
think the home in the Connecticut hills the main object 
of his existence, and the great business over which he 



Getting the Rural Savor into City Life 63 

presides, with its branch houses in several American 
cities, as well as in London, Melbourne and Bombay, 
only a secondary consideration. 

His magazine article struck a responsive chord in 
many hearts, and brought him many letters of ap- 
preciation, one of which I wrote from my office in the 
Department of the Interior at Washington. Probably 
this book would not have been written at this time ex- 
cept for that incident, which is my excuse for the fol- 
lowing quotation: 

"Your philosophy has a distinct bearing on the 
garden city plans we are considering here. The num- 
ber of persons who can purchase and improve aban- 
doned farms, and give them the necessary attention, 
is comparatively small, and I fear it always will be; 
but the home-in-a-garden which we have in mind, where 
the man will own an acre or two of ground and be 
shown how to make the most of it by intensive means 
applying not only to the soil but to various kinds of 
livestock will enable multitudes to take your prescrip- 
tion of good, useful and productive work instead of 
play. 

"The people to whom I refer are probably not golf- 
players now, but they are in need of rural experience, 
and hunger for some touch of the open spaces." 

He thought it good philosophy and called for a 
program. I answered: "It would take a book." He 
retorted, "Then by all means write it." 

Our problem, then, is to get the rural savor into 
city life; to open the way to homes on the land for 
the multitude of our country-minded now living within 



64 City Homes on Country Lanes 

city walls; to bring within reach of all who desire it, 
the experience of David Grayson and of our New York 
business man. The limitations as to capital and leisure 
mentioned in my letter must be kept in mind. It is 
clearly a job of social engineering. 
But it can be done! 



CHAPTER V 

THE INVISIBLE CITY OF HOMES 

These are the things I prize 

And hold of dearest worth: 
Light of the sapphire skies, 

Peace of the silent hills, 
Shelter of forests, comfort of the grass, 

Music of birds, murmur of little rills, 
Shadows of clouds that swiftly pass, 

And after showers 
The smell of flowers 

And of the good brown earth: 
And best of all, along the way, 

Friendship and mirth. 

Henry Van Dyke. 

HOW does it happen that all of our cities are 
surrounded by a wide belt of nearly vacant 
land, which, if used at all, falls far short of 
its best possibilities? True, the city must s^op some- 
where, but why should it stop short of the genuine 
rural district? Possibly it is an illustration of the 
law laid down by Julius Seelye: "In truly living insti- 
tutions, the instinct of development is wiser than the 
wisdom of the wisest." 

These vacant areas have been waiting for something 
for something more valuable than the old order of 
rural life ; more valuable, too, than congested city life. 
They have been waiting for the Era of the Garden 
Home. Even now, those vacant spaces constitute the 
City Invisible. 



66 City Homes on Cowitry Lanes 

The practical explanation is, of course, that such 
lands have become too valuable for farming because 
of their proximity to large population, and are held 
out of use in anticipation of urban expansion. The 
more their value diminishes for the one purpose, the 
more it increases for the other. That there is an inter- 
mediate use which in its practical outworking restores 
their productive capacity, while still reserving them 
for the possible future needs of city extension, is a 
truth that has escaped the sharp-eyed real-estate fra- 
ternity in most localities, though not in all, as we 
shall presently see. As a means of reducing the matter 
to the concrete, let us consider the situation at the 
National Capital, our beautiful Washington. 

Within a ten-mile circle drawn around the Capitol 
Dome are thousands of acres of good agricultural 
land, of which the merest fraction has been reduced 
to intensive cultivation. Much of it is wastef ully used ; 
much of it is not used at all. Conditions of soil, 
climate and water-supply are good, and represent a 
fair average for the United States. Suburban trans- 
portation is a serious problem in some localities, and 
less so in others, but is being rapidly simplified by 
the extension of good roads and the increasing use 
of motor vehicles, both bus and truck. 

In his annual report to the President, dated No- 
vember 21, 1919, Secretary Lane called attention to 
this situation, and said: 

"Somewhere and sometime, it seems to me, a new 
system must be devised to disperse the people of great 
cities on the vacant lands surrounding them, to give 
the masses a real hold upon the soil, and to replace 



The Invisible City of Homes 67 

the apartment house with a home in a garden. Such 
a system should enable the ambitious and thrifty fam- 
ily not only to save the entire cost of rent, but possibly 
half the cost of food, while at the same time enhanc- 
ing its standard of living socially and spiritually, as 
well as economically. 

"It has been suggested that there is no better place 
to demonstrate a new form of suburban life than here 
at the National Capital, where we may freely draw 
upon all the resources of the governmental departments 
for expert knowledge and advice, and where the demon- 
stration can readily command wide publicity, and come 
under the observation of the Nation's law-makers. 
And I am expecting that such an experiment will be 
made. Such a plan of community life rather than 
city life should be extended to every other large city 
in the Nation." 

And he added with profound conviction: 

"I put first among the constructive things which 
may be done by the exercise of the Government's power 
of supervision and direction, this matter of providing 
suburban homes for our millions of wage-earners." 

In later pages we shall see precisely what is meant 
by the term "Garden Home." We are going to stand 
among our fruits and vegetables, listening to the cackle 
of our fowl, and the hum of our bees, and observing 
the sleek prosperity of our rabbits and fine Swiss 
goats. We are going to enjoy the shade of our trees 
and inhale the perfume of our roses. Still further 
along, we are going to consider what constructive 
machinery, as revealed by the inquiry set in motion 
by Secretary Lane, society must provide in order to 



68 City Homes on Country Lanes 

achieve these blessings for the millions of our common 
humanity for those whose dream of a sweeter and 
finer way of .life is destined to come true. But here 
we are still dealing with general principles underlying 
it all. Let us return to Washington for this purpose: 

Here is a city of nearly 450,000 which goes on grow- 
ing with each decade, and which in view of some ex- 
pert minds may ultimately reach a total of a million 
or even two millions. While it has few industries, it is 
preeminently a payroll city. And of all payrolls in 
the world, Uncle Sam's ranks first in point of depend- 
ability. 

Here are tens of thousands of people engaged in 
a daily routine which, for much the larger part of 
them, offers little variety, and not the slightest opportu- 
nity to exercise their initiative faculties. As a class, 
their positions are secure, and their income certain 
beyond anything that is known in ordinary industrial 
walks. They can look down the vista of the years and 
plan for their future with better assurance of con- 
summation than almost any other class of salaried 
workers. And yet, there is an end to the road old age. 

This is not now the sheer drop it once was and is 
yet for nearly all salaried workers except those em- 
ployed by the United States. There is now an old- 
age pension for Government people. But, while it 
represents a progressive step in humanitarian legisla- 
tion, and is particularly valuable because of the prin- 
ciple established, it is almost entirely inadequate to 
the needs of those living in the crowded city and hav- 
ing no retreat in view. It breaks the fall, but provides 
no comfortable resting place. 



The Invisible City of Homes 69 

With the exception of mechanics, letter-carriers, and 
postal clerks, the old-age pension applies only to those 
who have been on the Government payroll for periods 
ranging from 15 to 30 years and reached 70 years 
of age. It is divided into six classes, and the maximum 
amount of the annuity ranges from $360 a year in the 
lowest to $720 in the highest class. 

Without indulging in ungracious criticism of an 
act inspired by the finest spirit, it must be said that 
even the maximum annuity, under the highest class, 
spells hardly more than poverty for those who must 
continue to pay city prices for rent and food. Prob- 
ably the average annuity will not exceed $500, and 
this is scarcely more than the single item of rent that 
must be paid by the average family in Washington. 
It would mean, perhaps, a sudden shrinkage to half or 
two-thirds the average income received before retire- 
ment. Not a pleasant prospect, surely, for old age! 
We must do better, infinitely better than this, or our 
civilization is, indeed, a sorry failure. 

Let us turn now to a happier picture, that of the 
Government clerk in full tide of health and strength, 
with his assured income and years of usefulness before 
him. To-day he is paying a good share of his salary 
for rent, and that rent inevitably grows with the 
growth of the city. Every dollar so paid is a futility 
from the standpoint of investment or provision for the 
future. Whether he gets his money's worth as he 
goes along is beside the question. He might be paying 
rent to himself instead of the landlord, and he ought 
to do so. He might become a direct beneficiary of 
the growing land values, instead of their hopeless vie- 



70 City Homes on Country Lanes 

tim; and he ought to do that. Savings-bank deposits 
are strikingly less in Washington than in many indus- 
trial communities ; a fact that signifies not less thrift, 
but less pay. Nevertheless, it is possible to devise a 
plan under which every family represented on the Gov- 
ernment payroll might acquire a garden home of its 
own within a reasonable number of years. Further- 
more, if there is any prize that can be offered that 
would evoke the last ounce of energy and ambition 
the utmost measure of thrift on the part of the average 
family it is the garden home and security for old age. 

We are going to see, presently, that $720 a year, 
or even $360 a year, for the man who owns his rent- 
free home, produces a large part of his table supplies, 
and enjoys his facilities of amusement, recreation and 
intellectual enlargement at the minimum cost, is a very 
different thing from the same amount of money for a 
family paying the last cent of tribute to landlord, 
merchant, middleman and transportation agencies. 

The economic gain for those transplanted from the 
city apartment to the home in a garden is important, 
and naturally the first thing to claim our attention. 
It is, however, when considered from the standpoint 
of the character of our people and their institutions, 
of less importance than the spiritual and social gains 
to be scored to the credit of the process. If a man 
goes up in his own estimation when he puts on a new 
suit of clothes, as is generally conceded, how much 
higher will he rise when he steps from rented quarters 
into a home of his own? His own ground, his own 
roof, his own fireside! It will not be quite so easy 
to tell him how to vote on election day not quite! 



The Invisible City of Homes 71 

His sovereignty is enhanced, his citizenship ennobled. 
He may still work for wages, but he has won a stake 
in the proprietorship of his country. He sings "My 
Country "Tis of Thee" with a new emphasis. The old 
flag, always beautiful to his eyes, is eloquent now. 

So with his food : It is not merely that he has some- 
thing to eat he has always had that and always ex- 
pected to but it is the fact that it is the food of his 
planting, nursing, raising, reaping. Never were there 
such strawberries as he picks, warm with the sunshine 
of his garden. Never were there peppers with such 
a "kick" as those coming fresh from his vines. We 
need not go through the list, we are going to fondle all 
these precious things later; but at this point it is 
essential that we should feel the thrill of the new ad- 
venture, and understand that we are unlocking a spirit 
that has almost perished between the drudgery and 
loneliness of the old forms of rural life and the pressure 
of urban congestion. It is a very precious spirit one 
that draws man close to God in the joy of co-creation. 

The social metamorphosis to be wrought will bring 
an immense accession of health and vigor into the lives 
of families and communities. We have learned that 
in the matter of social organization, as, perhaps, in 
the matter of industrial organization, there is a unit 
that is too large for efficiency, just as there is a unit 
that is too small for efficiency. A recent instance has 
come under my observation the experience of a Cali- 
fornia boy attending the largest high school in the 
United States. The school is nobly housed; equipped 
with every facility, even to its printing office, bank and 
restaurants, and second to none in the ability and de- 



72 City Homes on Country Lanes 

votion of its faculty. And yet with all these advan- 
tages and its 3,000 pupils, it offers less in a spiritual 
sense than the school from which he came in California, 
where there were only 150 pupils. It is assumed that 
the reader knows that California schools are by no 
means to be compared with average rural schools men- 
tioned in an earlier chapter. California is in a class 
by itself not only with respect to climate and scenery, 
but in the magnificence of its school fund, and the 
progressive spirit of its people. 

The point is that the Washington school suffers from 
its bigness, while the California school gains by its 
smallness. The loss and gain are wholly in the matter 
of the spirit, not in physical or technical conditions. 
It is really true that work outside of the prescribed 
programme, and dependent upon the voluntary interest 
of the students, as, for example, the debating society, 
draws the larger attendance in the small school, the 
lesser in the big one. 

The principle applies to all departments of social 
and intellectual life. While a community may be too 
small for the successful cultivation of such interests, 
it may also be so large as almost entirely to efface 
them. The garden city offers ideal soil for the culti- 
vation of the social plant. Not only is it right as to 
the quantity, but also as to the quality, of its citizen- 
ship. It is not so large as to suffocate the neighborly 
instinct, nor is it likely to foster class distinctions 
arising from differences of wealth and position. These 
considerations have a deep significance with respect to 
our national character. 



The Invisible City of Homes 73 

In considering this aspect of the subject the fact 
should be borne in mind that the people of the garden 
homes share all of the advantages of the metropolis. 
They are by no means detached from its life. As in the 
case of the extremely well-to-do referred to in earlier 
pages, they are of the city, though not in the city. 
To a very large extent they enjoy the benefits and 
avoid the drawbacks of both city and country. The- 
aters, libraries, art galleries, pageants, and spectacles 
of every sort ; big department stores ; opportunities to 
see and hear the great of every land as they go on 
their rounds; newspapers at morning and evening, 
even the midnight extra all these, and much more, 
are for the denizens of the garden homes, as much as 
for the residents of the crowded towns. 

Why has this new and better form of life lingered 
so long in the coming? Awaiting its logical hour in 
the process of social evolution, perhaps ; yet that is 
not all, for many have seen the light and wished to 
follow it. This could not usually be done, at least 
in the best way, by an individual family acting alone. 
It calls for planned development; for the purchase 
and subdivision of land upon a large scale ; for scientific 
preparation of the soil; for the installation of com- 
munity facilities and utilities, such as water-supply, 
sewerage, parks and public buildings. In a word, for 
the genius of social engineering, supplemented by an 
amount of capital and executive capacity that shall 
be equal to a large constructive task. All this belongs 
rather more to the programme than to the philosophy 
of the subject, and will be considered in its proper 



74 City Homes on Cowntry Lanes 

place. First, let us make sure that the thing is worth 
doing; then it will be proper to consider how it may 
be done. 

The opportunity lies there, out in the sunshine, in 
the surroundings of every city in the land. And the 
Invisible shall become the Visible, even to the material 
sight, as now to the eyes of the Spirit. 



CHAPTER VI 

GARDEN INSTINCT REVEALED BY WAR 

"The kiss of the sun for pardon; 

The song of the birds for mirth; 
One is nearer God's heart in a garden 
Than anywhere else on earth." 

THERE are those who deny that there is any 
such thing as a latent love for the soil in the 
hearts of our urban masses. They assert that 
the last thing that would appeal to these people is a 
patch of ground and a hoe; that they have turned 
their back on the country with a sigh of relief and a 
grim determination to have no more of it; that their 
whole interest in life is bounded by the metropolitan 
horizon; that within these limits are their livelihood, 
their social, intellectual and religious interests; and, 
beyond an occasional picnic in the woods, they care for 
naught else. 

Such criticism, of course, loses most of its force 
when applied to the garden home, which simply en- 
larges the city boundaries and sacrifices little or 
nothing in the way of urban advantages. Apart from 
that, however, the criticism rests on mistaken grounds. 
Love for the soil has not gone out of men's hearts. 
It is a primal instinct which may have been repressed, 
or even paralyzed for the time, but can no more be 
destroyed than love of family or love of country. 
It is of divine substance hence, indestructible. 

75 



76 City Homes on Cowntry Lanes 

The world war, which illuminated many dark cor- 
ners, revealed the gardening instinct in all its original 
vigor, and mobilized it for the service of the country 
without the formality of the selective draft. We raised 
4,800,000 soldiers and trained them for battle with 
marvelous celerity; but, at the same time, an army 
of 5,250,000 war gardeners grasped rake and hoe and 
proceeded to do their part without the inspiration of 
martial music, without hope of glory or material re- 
ward. It was a remarkable demonstration, showing 
that our people have not only the instinct but the 
aptitude for this adventure. It was a great light 
thrown upon the character, the capacity, the aspira- 
tions of the American people. It is one of the war 
lessons which has not been appreciated at anything 
like its true value. 

The National War Garden Commission was not, as 
most people suppose, a Government activity, though it 
had its headquarters in Washington, and enjoyed the 
moral support of Federal authority. It was the volun- 
tary undertaking of a number of patriotic citizens, 
headed by Charles Lathrop Pack, of Lakewood, N. J., 
President of the American Forestry Association. For 
more than two years he turned over bodily the activities 
of that organization to the war-garden work, at a 
cost of about $1,000,000 a year, raised by himself 
and associates, and consecrated to the work of popular 
education., The task undertaken was so extraordinary 
that most men would have regarded it as impossible 
of accomplishment. 

The problem was to bring about a vast increase in 
the country's food supply: to do it very quickly, and 



Garden Instinct Revealed by War 77 

to do it without taking from existing farming opera- 
tions either an acre of ground or the labor of a single 
man, since both land and labor were already under 
the fullest pressure. Not only so, but the railroads 
were groaning under the heaviest demands and it was 
essential that the vast increase of food supply should 
be obtained without adding materially to the burden 
of the railroads. How could the thing be done? Only 
by inducing the people to utilize every piece of ground, 
without remitting any of their regular work, which 
was also in unusual demand. 

The scheme was chimerical, of course. Any sensible 
person would have known it! But Mr. Pack and his 
friends did not know it. They believed that the great 
spirit evoked by the war could do impossible things. 
The event proved that they were right. 

Millions of gardens more than five millions 
sprung into almost immediate existence. These gardens 
blossomed not only in the workingman's back yard, 
but on the millionaire's front lawn. Italian gardens, 
which had been the pride of their owners, were beauti- 
fied by straight rows of common vegetables and min- 
istered yet more to pride. Public parks, which had 
been mere fields for popular recreation, were dedicated 
to a more sacred public purpose that of feeding the 
people and winning the war. The total product of this 
war-gardening scheme between May, 1917, and June, 
1919, reached the impressive figure of $1,250,000,000. 
The plan served its immediate purpose; but its deeper 
significance has yet to enter the consciousness of our 
people. 

First, it revealed the affinity of our people for the 



78 City Homes on Country Lanes 

soil. Men rushed for the shipyards to work for $10 
a day. While they were inspired by the depredations 
of the German submarines, they also obtained substan- 
tial material reward for their own pockets. When 
these same men got up an hour earlier to cultivate their 
gardens, and came home from the shipyard to labor 
with the hoe until dark, they were working for some- 
thing higher than dollars, in response to a finer im- 
pulse than the desire for gain. 

They were preserving their families and their coun- 
try against the peril of possible famine. They were 
exerting their initiative and creative faculties, and they 
found that the process yielded a great sense of satis- 
faction. They were adventuring upon the lost field 
of individual independence, and while they did not 
go far in that direction, they yet went far enough to 
catch a fleeting glimpse of the promised land. They 
demonstrated their aptitude for the thing. And that 
was a comfort. If they had once known how, they 
discovered that they had not forgotten. If they had 
never known how, they discovered that they could 
learn. And that was a joy. 

This brings us to another hopeful aspect of the 
matter: Of the 5,250,000 families who enlisted as war 
gardeners, something like 3,000,000 really did not 
know how to do it, or at least how to do it the best way. 
To my mind, this is one of the most valuable lessons 
of the experience the teachability of our people; the 
willingness to learn; their eagerness to respond to dis- 
interested leadership. For, be it known, not less than 
3,000,000 of these families entered into direct com- 
munication with the National War Garden Commission 




CHARLES LATHROP PACK 

President of American Forestry Association, whose remarkable success as Chairman of the 

National War Garden Commission (1918-19) revealed the latent love of the American 

masses for the soil 



Garden Instinct Revealed by War 79 

at Washington, taking correspondence lessons at the 
hands of the best experts money could employ, or 
patriotic fervor command. These lessons included the 
art of preserving vegetables for winter use. 

The result was an extraordinary and almost imme- 
diate stiffening of the battle-front. There was an 
enormous gain in efficiency. War gardening became 
a science in many instances. If the war had lasted 
ten years longer, the nation would have learned the 
greatest single fact in the world that a man can 
make a living from a very little land. And, when that 
fact is finally learned, in the length and breadth of 
America there will be neither a homeless man nor a 
hungry child. 

Was it Woodrow Wilson who intimated that if we 
could have the same spirit in peace that we have in 
war the world would speedily become a paradise? 

The war-garden episode, great as it was in its im- 
mediate results, was only an example of crude emer- 
gency work. Its value for the present purpose is to 
show that the country-minded millions in big cities can 
garden, and will garden, if they have a chance; and 
that these facts have a very intimate relation to cost 
of living. To accomplish the best results, however, 
they must have a better chance than they found in 
vacant city plots. The city of the future should be 
so organized that the work may be conducted on a 
permanent basis and under the best conditions. Further- 
more, it must be founded on the principle of home- 
ownership, of landed proprietorship. While a man 
will work with fierce energy on anybody's ground to help 
his country under the stress of war, it is his own 



80 City Homes on Cowitry Lanes 

ground that evokes his abiding love, and with it all 
of his resources of energy and skill in times of peace. 

Neither is gardening, and especially the culture of 
vegetables which come to maturity in a few weeks or 
months, more than the beginning of industry in the 
true garden home. The fruits of tree and vine lie 
beyond the scope of the emergency garden or city 
plots, requiring years for profitable production. 
Then there is the matter of small livestock, with its 
assurance of milk and meat, as well as fresh eggs for 
breakfast. If to these considerations we add the need 
of permanent demonstration plants and other forms 
of popular instruction, together with the institutions 
of social and intellectual life, we readily see how far 
short the war garden necessarily falls of meeting the 
need. 

There are a number of American cities where the 
war-garden idea has taken root and become a per- 
manent institution, and where new subdivisions have 
been laid out with this idea in view. In such cases 
the lots are made unusually large, ranging from one- 
fourth of an acre to an acre, and planned with special 
reference to the accommodation of poultry-yards, rab- 
bitries, and similar small livestock. The movement is 
particularly advanced in California, especially in the 
neighborhood of Los Angeles, where it has become a 
genuine gospel. For example, how different from the 
ordinary announcement of the new subdivision is the 
following : 

"The shadow of the coming economic reaction lies 
across the path of every wage-earner. 



Garden Instinct Revealed by War 81 

"It clouds the future of every salary-earner. 

"Why not lift that shadow 

"And get out into the sunshine? 

"Why not turn the tide so that 

"You may float upstream instead of down? 

"The Homecroft garden is the anchor within 

"And it is within every man's reach. 

"Every family seeking health and happiness should 
think for itself and realize that it must solve its own 
problem, instead of thoughtlessly marching in lock- 
step with a multitude who do no thinking, and are 
merely drifting toward the point of least resistance. 
The only safe course for any family is to break away 
from the unthinking mass ; and, as a family anchorage, 
secure the ownership of a piece of land from which 
their own efforts will produce the food for the family, 
at a point nearby the commerce of the city." 

These are the words of George H. Maxwell, one of 
the strongest advocates of the garden home, and a man 
of standing in American public life, who discovered 
the truth many years ago. The fact that it has be- 
come popular to depend on his philosophy instead of 
the old-fashioned real estate arguments as a means of 
winning favor for a new subdivision is a most hopeful 
sign. 

In England the garden-city idea has taken firm root, 
and there have been several successful examples, notably 
that of Letchworth. In the United States nothing 
really adequate and worthy of the nation has yet 
found expression on the soil; though there has been 
much discussion, and the idea has many advocates. 



82 City Homes on Country Lanes 

There can be no doubt whatever that the people are 
ready for it millions of people and that the garden 
city should be as much a part of every municipal 
equipment as the water-supply, schools, public libraries, 
or street-railway systems. 



CHAPTER VII 

"THE MOST VALUABLE OF ALL ARTS" 

I believe in a spade and an acre of ground. Whoso cuts a 
straight path to his own living by the help of God, in the sun 
and rain and sprouting grain, seems to be a universal working 
man. He solves the problem of life. 

Emerson. 

ELSEWHERE I have ventured the prediction 
that the next great passion of mankind will 
be for the soil. Now let me add that the next 
great popular science, the next great popular art, will 
be the science and the art employed by millions of 
ambitious, energetic folk in building the peace garden 
on the foundation of the war-garden experience, thus 
raising the American standard of living higher than 
ever before, and establishing the institutions of our 
common life upon the enduring basis of landed pro- 
prietorship and individual independence. 

Sixty-two years ago Abraham Lincoln, in a casual 
speech, scarcely reported at the time, and the tre- 
mendous import of which has not been sensed by the 
people even now, used these prophetic words: 

"The most valuable of all arts will be the art of 
deriving a comfortable subsistence from the smallest 
area of soil." 

It is a good speaker who can put one big thought 
into a single sentence of twenty-two words, but Lincoln 
put three separate and distinct big thoughts into the 

83 



84 City Homes on Cowntry Lanes 

sentence I have quoted. And in each of these there is 
the germ of a great philosophy of every-day life. One 
wonders if the orator himself realized all that he was 
saying; or whether he simply followed Emerson's 
counsel : "A man should learn to detect and watch that 
gleam of light which flashes across his mind from 
within, more than the luster of the firmament of bards 
and sages." Consciously or unconsciously, he reflected 
the Infinite Intelligence as surely in this as in the 
famous speech at Gettysburg and the Second Inaug- 
ural. 

Consider the significance of the expression, "the most 
valuable of all arts" as applied to the cultivation of 
the soil. Who had thought of it as in any sense an 
art this matter of planting and digging potatoes? 
An occasional poet or philosopher, perhaps ; but cer- 
tainly this was not the idea entertained by the common 
intelligence. Art, according to Noah Webster, is "the 
skillful and systematic adaptability of means for the 
attainment of some desired end; skill in accomplishing 
a purpose." Science, according to the same authority, 
is "knowledge gained and verified by exact observation, 
and correct thinking especially as methodically formu- 
lated and arranged in a rational system." 

During the past half century, and especially the 
past two or three decades, thanks to Government and 
university activities, American agriculture has ad- 
vanced far along these lines. But Lincoln was speak- 
ing to the pioneer settlers in a new State barely emerg- 
ing from the wilderness Wisconsin in 1859. There 
was very little science or system in the farming method 
then and there in vogue. And in coupling "art" with 



"The Most Valuable of All Arts" 85 

the prosaic work of planting the new clearing, the 
orator must have spoken over the heads of most of 
his audience. But Lincoln was right. We shall never 
make the most of our resources the most of man's 
innate love for the soil until the farmer and gardener 
imbibe the spirit of the artist. 

Lincoln spoke of deriving "a comfortable subsist- 
ence from the land." And this was his second big 
thought. He was speaking, doubtless, to men who had 
gone into the wilderness thinking more of getting rich 
than of getting a living. They had taken up free 
land all they could possibly obtain under the law 
with the expectation that it would become of high value 
with the passing of the years and the growth of popu- 
lation an expectation that was by no means disap- 
pointed. But Lincoln did not laud this purpose. He 
was blind to the possibilities of speculation; deaf to 
the call of sudden riches. Himself the child of poverty, 
hardship and struggle, his prayer for his countrymen 
was that they might achieve "a comfortable subsist- 
ence," which to his mind meant security of life, even 
unto old age. 

Greatest of all was his final thought: "The smallest 
area of soil." The very crux of our rural civilization, 
the very hope of our rural democracy, lies in that 
phrase. It represents the antithesis of land monopoly 
and exalts the hope of a well-provided life as the 
dearest goal of our citizenship. When men shall come 
to regard the use of the soil as an art, based on scientific 
knowledge and pursued by scientific methods ; when 
they accept the thought of a "comfortable subsist- 
ence" rather than unearned speculative profits as the 



86 City Homes on Cowntry Lanes 

object of their efforts; and when they learn to satisfy 
these needs from "the smallest area of soil," then we 
shall solve our rural problem in a way that will bring 
real satisfaction to the soul of America. 

The smaller the holding, the more intensive hence 
the more artistic and scientific its cultivation must 
necessarily be. The smaller the holding, the nearer 
and more numerous the neighbors hence the finer the 
institutions of civic and social and intellectual and 
spiritual life will inevitably become. 

Lincoln said it all ! 

The time has come to apply this wisdom in the prac- 
tical life of our people. It points directly to the home 
in a garden for millions of our country-minded city peo- 
ple. It extends, however, beyond them and reaches out 
into the true rural life of the nation, now awaiting some 
new and mighty impulse that shall effect a basic reor- 
ganization and reconstruction. Here, as well as in the 
garden home, there is need of art and science; of the 
adoption of a "comfortable subsistence" as an economic 
ideal, and the realization of all the social, intellectual 
and spiritual possibilities inherent in the smallest area 
of soil. This branch of the subject will be considered 
later. Just now we are thinking of the garden home; 
and the place to go for our inspiration along practical 
lines is that part of the United States where the new 
mental attitude toward the soil has found the best ex- 
pression. This leads us to Southern California. 

There are certain apparent drawbacks in life that 
turn out to be mysterious providences, or blessings in 
disguise. For example, the movement toward the land 
is always a part of the phenomena of hard times. It 



"The Most Valuable of Att Arts" 87 

is at such times that men see clearly the insecurity of 
employment, with abject dependence on some one else 
for food and shelter. It is then they think of the 
earth as the real mother who never intended her chil- 
dren to suffer the pangs of hunger. 

Sometimes there is a blessing concealed in high land 
values. The more land costs, the less of it the average 
man can afford to buy. It is a case of "the less the 
better," down to a certain necessary minimum, which, 
of course, depends upon personal circumstances, in- 
cluding the size of the family. This is so because a 
man makes better use of the land and acquires neigh- 
borhood advantages that would otherwise be beyond 
his reach. 

Another fortunate "drawback" is deficient rainfall, 
and consequent need of irrigation. Irrigation is a 
scientific thing in itself, and the application of it in 
the best way a genuine art. Furthermore, it usually 
invokes the necessity of close cooperation among many 
using water from a common source. And the irrigation 
system in the West like the dykes in Holland has 
been the prolific mother of cooperative institutions of 
various kinds. 

Possibly this condition accounts for the priority and 
preeminence of Southern California in the matter of 
garden homes, though doubtless something must be 
credited to the caressing climate and the irresistible 
call of its mountain-guarded valleys. Whatever the 
explanation, it is there that the largest number of 
people have seen the light and gone farthest along the 
new path. 

"Feed yourself." This is the first maxim of the new 



88 City Homes on Country Lanes 

way of life, as preached in the garden homes of South- 
ern California. The idea is not only a sure but a 
luxurious living. Mr. Marshall V. Hartranft both 
prophet and practitioner of the art has declared: 

"You can take the menu program for the past year 
from twenty of the most affluent homes in Los Angeles, 
and find nothing but what is duplicated or served 
better in the acre-garden homes in Southern Cali- 
fornia." 

This is a very strong statement indeed ; but is it not 
splendid idealism the thought that the average family 
in the United States with income ranging from $500 
to $1,000 a year shall be assured of a table as generous, 
even as luxurious, as the table of a millionaire? The 
dreamer can go no further in the matter of creature 
comforts ; but is the thing within the range of practical 
possibility? 

Not surely by methods commonly pursued. The 
man who steps into the corner grocery and buys a few 
packages of seeds, plants them in ground not well pre- 
pared, has little or no comprehension of the relation 
between the amount of his planting and the amount 
of his family needs, takes no thought of what he is 
going to have for dinner a few weeks or months hence, 
but knows only in a general way that he is fond of 
this, that, or the other this man will not dine like the 
millionaire. Science must be enlisted, art employed, 
forethought used, if any such result is to be obtained. 
That is what Mr. Hartranft meant when he said "Pro- 
gramme, Method and Schedule are the watchwords of 
acre efficiency." 

The first thing on the programme is a bill of fare 



"The Most Valuable of All Arts' 9 89 

mapped out long in advance. In fact, they call it 
"Housekeeping by the Year." 

It is obvious that if one is to have certain vegetables 
for dinner on June 22, for example the planting 
must be done some time in advance, or it will be neces- 
sary to run to the corner grocery and buy the vege- 
tables. That will do for the millionaire, but not for 
the home gardener. And, by the way, this is a good 
place to remark that the home gardener has the ad- 
vantage of the millionaire in this respect, since his 
vegetables will be fresh from the garden, and stamped 
with that ineffable something that attaches to his 
own creation. There is an element of love in it that 
ones does not get in the more or less wilted vegetables 
bought at the store after passing through many alien 
hands ; nor even in vegetables raised in one's own garden 
by hired men. 

The menu goes up on the kitchen wall, accompanied 
by tables of maturity, so that the housekeeper can 
look ahead and see just what material she will have 
at her disposal on a certain date. The planting is 
done, of course, in accordance with the bill-of-fare. 
This brings us to another step in the new and valuable 
art. This step is successional planting planting a 
little of everything in the way of perishable vegetables 
one day in each week. In the case I have in mind, 
Tuesday is planting day, and the rest of the week is 
given to cultural days. Usually the work is done in 
the early morning hours, "when the wild life of the 
country tunes up and ushers in the shafts of sunshine 
that break over the canyon walls." This method is 
guaranteed to produce a good appetite for breakfast. 



90 City Homes on Country Lanes 

One of the interesting aims of the new science is to 
find a true per-capita basis for planting. It is the 
common experience of those who have gardens that 
they plant far more of certain varieties than they can 
consume, sell to the neighbors, or even give away. 
There is a profound economic fallacy in this. Mr. 
Hartranf t puts it strikingly when he says : 

"We find that one tomato plant will supply the 
needs of one person. On that one plant we make a 
million per cent of profit; but if we raise a second 
tomato plant without a profitable market for the sur- 
plus, we lose a billion per cent on that one." 

The bill-of-fare, of course, includes much besides 
vegetables. There are the fruits of the tree and vine; 
milk and eggs ; a variety of meat. These are matters 
which will be discussed in detail farther on, but just 
here it is desirable to concentrate the reader's attention 
upon the importance of ordered production to a de- 
sired end, that end being a good living according to 
a prearranged bill-of-fare. There is, perhaps, no bet- 
ter way than to follow Mr. Hartranft's description 
of the home gardener, as he sees him in one of the 
beautiful valleys among the Sierra Madre Mountains, 
not far from Los Angeles. While details must be 
adjusted to the requirements of the climate in different 
regions, the principles are similar in all localities. He 
says: 

"He has a chart of his ground and begins the winter 
garden. If rows can be made 100 feet long it is best, 
but it is planted only part at a time. The manuring, 
the watering and the plowing of the new plot being 



"The Most Valuable of All Arts" 91 

ready, on a certain Tuesday he starts a mixed row 
of plantings about like this : 

"Kind Amount per person 

Lettuce 7 plants, 6 inches apart 

Beans 3 seeds, 4 inches apart 

Beets 6 inches, sown thickly 

Carrots 4 inches, sown thickly 

Kale 3 inches, sown thickly 

Spinach 3 to 5 inches, sown thickly 

Turnips 6 inches 

Corn 6 grains Bantam variety 

Mustard 1 plant for whole season 

Onion 8 sets, two inches apart 

Peas 10-ft. row, inoculate and lime 

Egg-plant 1 plant for whole season 

Tomato 1 plant for whole season 

Cabbage 1 plant weekly, constant moisture 

Radishes Sow thickly between last four 

Celery Plant a solid row, 8 feet per person 

"The following Tuesday he will use the same list, 
except egg-plant and tomato, and then will have two 
of his thirty-foot rows coming along. These small 
rows he must ardently care for every morning after the 
few chickens and rabbits are fed. 

"Acreculture of this character must be allied with 
two walnut, olive and ahuacate trees, several raisin 
grapevines, prunes, figs, peaches, apricots, enough for 
drying and canning, chickens, pigeons and rabbits (in- 
stead of a pup) and a hive for the honeybee. 

"It is a notable fact, and lamentable, that the ten- 



92 City Homes on Country Lanes 

dency is to overplant all the berries. One loganberry 
bush, one mammoth blackberry and one Himalaya berry 
per individual are as much or more than can be used 
if the vines are carefully attended." 

The varieties of fruit trees would naturally vary 
with the climate. Of the housekeeping side of the 
matter, he speaks as follows : 

"Just as the programme of life is figured on a card 
system, so is the housekeeping calculated from the 
maturities column shown above in the planting chart 
for each month of the year. A menu made up from 
the maturities column for every day is then shown; 
and then, in the 'advance-work' column, can be counted 
and set forth exactly the number of glasses of jelly 
and preserved fruits and vegetables contained in the 
whole year's menu. These itemized figures are carried 
to the proper month when they should be prepared, and 
the whole month's work is on the kitchen wall, right 
at the time the crops are available for using. These 
also demonstrate how much less is required of each 
variety than is usually attempted. Only those who 
have lived from an orchard and garden can appreciate 
the true luxury of the annual menu. Taking November 
1, as a specimen, it reads this way: 

"Breakfast: Sliced salway peaches, corn fritters, 
comb honey, toast, coffee. 

"Lunch: String-bean salad, fried tomatoes, milk 
gravy, boiled potatoes, tea. 

"Dinner: Tomato soup, ripe olives, lettuce, boiled 
squab, baked sweet potatoes, lemon pie, coffee." 

In many places some other kind of pickles would 
be substituted for olives, and some other kind of fruit 



"The Most Valuable of All Arts" 93 

pie for lemon, so that nothing except a little flour, 
coffee and spices would represent cash expenditure in 
the preparation of these three meals. Of course they 
are capable of almost infinite variation. 

I can not refrain from giving a glimpse of the goats 
and the bees, since milk and honey are important fea- 
tures of the menu, as they figure in Mr. Hartranft's 
philosophy. 

"Back East, in the village where I grew up, we had 
the herd boy, who came in summer and took our cow 
to the pasture. It will be so with our Swiss Toggen- 
burg goats in the foothills. In our town we have not 
enough of the high breeds to employ a herder yet, but 
it will come, and Nellie will go to the wild lands with 
the neighbors' goats and come back at evening to her 
accustomed stall. On this line we already have the 
bee factor who manages our hives on shares, keeps 
the bees in good health, and to-day he brought over 
300 pounds of fine honey. If you like honey you con- 
sider sugar a poor substitute in coffee and in baking 
and cooking. Did the Mission Fathers have sugar? 
Is not sugar only a part of the careless habit of run- 
ning to the grocery store and buying dinner from tin 
cans?" 

He runs joyously on: 

"Since getting my hands into the honey business I 
feel so stuck up that I am going to send East and get 
a couple of those rustic-looking straw hives that you 
see in the pictures of English gardens those thatched- 
roof affairs. Any Southern Calif ornian who does not 
have honey when all of these flowers are abloom, is the 
one who is stung. He is living a counterfeit life in the 



94 City Homes on Country Lanes 

midst of plenty. He is one of the great mass of people 
who are huddled into apartment flats, innocently as- 
suming that 'you can't eat honey if you don't have 
money !' ' 

The art of living well from a little land that shall 
be worthy of Abraham Lincoln's prophecy must include 
not only the systematic production of all the elements 
of the bill-of-fare, but also the art of utilizing these 
materials by means of the best cooking, and the art 
of serving them on the daintiest of tables. The whole 
scheme of luxurious living must hang together, for we 
are going to boost our common standard of living to 
the level of the millionaire! God must have intended 
we should do so when He made the green earth. He 
provided a land of plenty. If we have lost the way 
perhaps we shall rediscover it in time to avert the 
worst consequences of our folly and ignorance. 

I can not leave that garden city among the hills 
without quoting its most distinguished citizen concern- 
ing the new way of life. John S. McGroarty, Cal- 
ifornia's poet laureate, and author of the classic 
"Mission Play," writes of the only Millionaires' Club 
in the world that prides itself on its broad in- 
clusiveness. 

"The club holds its meetings at least once a day on 
the steps of the postoffice," he tells us. "The only 
qualification for membership is that you must be a 
millionaire. 

"When the neighbors told us about it first we said 
it couldn't be, because there are no millionaires in these 
hills. And the neighbors answered back and said yes, 
there are lots of them here. They said they were mil- 



"The Most Valuable of All Arts 9 ' 95 

lionaires of happiness. And they said we could join 
if we were in that class. 

"And we said we saw the point, and it meant that 
Rockefeller and Morgan and the Jap potato king, and 
those kind of fellows, were barred out. But the neigh- 
bors said that this did not necessarily follow. That 
if a man had $1,000,000 he could join just the same, 
provided he were also a millionaire of happiness. And, 
if he did not have ten cents, but were a millionaire of 
happiness which he could well be if he wanted to 
why, he could join, too. So we put in our application 
and we hope that we will not be blackballed. 

"For, dearly beloved, a man is a millionaire if he be 
happy. More than that, he is the heir of all the ages. 
He is son of the morning star and brother of the dawn. 
To him has been handed down the heart of the dancers 
of Babylon, and the souls of them who laughed in Eden. 

"When God made you, He gave you the gift of 
happiness at your birth. If, since then, you have lost 
it, go back and find the road where you left the sun 
to wander in the shadow." 

Valuable indeed is the art, and precious the way of 
life, that makes everybody eligible to membership in 
the kind of millionaire's club whose entrance fee and 
annual dues are payable in the golden coin of happi- 
ness! 



CHAPTER VIII 

THE DAWNING OF THE NEW ART 

What these strong masters wrote at large in miles 

I followed in small copy in my acre ; 

For there's no rood has not a star above it; 

The cordial quality of pear or plum 

Ascends as gladly in a single tree 

As in broad orchards resonant with bees; 

And every atom poises for itself, 

And for the whole. 

Emerson. 

THERE is visible as yet only the gray dawn of 
the new art sketched in the previous chapter. 
The effulgence of the fully-risen sun is reserved 
for the future, but apparently for the early future. 
A few lonely pioneers thousands in the aggregate, 
yet relatively few out of our total population have 
beheld this vision of a well-provided life and a secure 
old age to be won by the scientific use of a little land. 
So the seeds of the new art have been planted. They 
must be nourished in the passion of millions for landed 
independence and self-expression. 

The work of the National War Garden Commission 
extended much further than a temporary increase in 
the food supply. It was rapidly expanding along 
scientific lines of development when the War came to a 
sudden end. For example, it put out many bills-of- 
fare to show the war gardeners how to make the most 
of their produce on the family table. In the latter part 

96 



The Dawning of the New Art 97 

of its existence, it gave much attention to the matter 
of canning vegetables for winter use. If it had been 
conceived and carried forward as a permanent institu- 
tion, it might have developed Lincoln's thought of "a 
comfortable subsistence from the smallest area of soil" 
to its full proportions. But many things ended with 
the War; and much that was readily done under the 
exaltation of the war spirit can only be accomplished 
now by an appeal to the deeper instincts of human na- 
ture. This appeal is being successfully made in many 
localities, especially in Southern California, as we have 
seen. 

One of the large contributors to the new art is Prof. 
C. L. Schufeldt of Los Angeles. First as the garden 
teacher in the public schools, and then as the garden 
editor of daily and weekly newspapers, he has probably 
inspired and directed more enlightened home gardening 
than any other man in the United States. A concrete 
illustration of his teachings is the accompanying dia- 
gram of a home and grounds occupying a lot 50x145 
feet, or 7,250 square feet. This is about one-sixth of 
an acre scarcely enough to do the thing quite com- 
fortably, even in California. Yet, a careful study of 
this plan will reveal delightful possibilities, both of 
family independence and social arrangements. 

On this small space of ground there is room' for a 
five-room bungalow, with bath and screened porch ; for 
a garage, and accommodations for three kinds of small 
livestock chickens, rabbits, and two fine Swiss goats, 
since two are necessary to keep the family in milk 
throughout the year. Then there are the vegetable 
plots, a dozen varieties of fruit trees, three kinds of 



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The Dawning of the New Art 99 

small fruits raised on bushes, grapevines on the per- 
gola, a rose garden and an abundance of other flowers. 
There is even the lath house for propagating tender 
plants. And with all this there is still room for a 
front lawn. The house itself, of course, is covered with 
flowering vines. 

Isn't it a dear, such a home within reach of the 
city payroll and in the midst of all urban advantages? 

Too small? Of course it is. It was made to fit the 
standard-sized lot in Los Angeles, which was not laid 
out with full comprehension of the economic plan under- 
lying this home. The lot should be twice the size a 
third of an acre; or, still better, three times as large, 
which would make half an acre. Yet, Professor Shu- 
feldt says "one-half the living expenses for a family 
of five persons may be obtained" even from so small 
a lot organized in this way. It saves, of course, all 
the rent, and probably half the cost of the food, after 
allowing for purchase of supplies, including feed for 
chickens, rabbits and goats, though they are fed in 
part from the garden. 

True, he is dealing with the gentle climate of Cali- 
fornia. It will be said: "There, perhaps, but not in 
Massachusetts or New York." The comment is very 
natural, yet essentially fallacious. It is perfectly true 
that the range of production is narrower and the season 
shorter in most parts of the United States. This is a 
consideration that does not affect livestock at all. It 
implies different varieties of trees, but not less fruit; 
more canning of small fruits and vegetables, but not 
less of these things to eat. In fact, so far as funda- 
mentals are concerned, all that can be done in Cali- 
fornia can be done elsewhere. Intensive cultivation of 



100 City Homes on Country Lanes 

garden farms pays as much, acre for acre, in the Cape 
Cod District of Massachusetts as in Southern Cali- 
fornia. In the present case, however, we are not talk- 
ing of raising food for market, but only for the family 
table. And it can be done on a small holding in any 
part of the United States. I have never seen more 
wonderful vegetables than I found in Alaska. 

There is a fallacy, too, in thinking that only Cali- 
fornia can supply the floral setting provided in the 
garden scheme. I was born and raised in New England 
in a generous home that, among plenty of everything 
else, had plenty of flowers, including the old-fashioned 
varieties. I have spent most of my life among the 
semi-tropical productions of California. I trust I am 
loyal to both the old home and the new when I say 
that the one is as attractive and satisfying as the other 
in this respect. They are different that is all. 

I dwell upon these things because they are really 
quite vital to the way of life we are considering. Jf 
God had made a whole world and placed all its bless- 
ings in a single corner, we should witness a greater con- 
gestion of population than has yet occurred to vex 
the sociologist. 

It is quite true that a winter season of four or five 
months will have its effect on the routine of the garden 
home and the social life of the garden city. But the 
law of compensation still works, and if there is loss, 
there is also gain. The vacation from garden work 
will not be wholly unwelcome. The appetite for out- 
doors will be sharpened when spring comes around. 
The social life of the community should brighten with 
the fires on the hearthstone. The opportunity for 



The Dawning of the New Art 101 

certain cottage industries should be enhanced. I have 
no hesitation in predicting that, given the same spirit 
and industry, the principles of the garden home pre- 
sented in Professor Schufeldt's diagram will work with 
equal profit and satisfaction in all parts 9f the coun- 
try. But it is, perhaps, not unnatural that Cali- 
fornia should take the lead. Her golden heart is set 
on homes ! 

The new art has advanced much in the past few 
years, by means of the planting table, now quite gen- 
erally appearing in newspapers and magazines. The 
best of these show what to plant (which of different 
varieties and different vegetables), how deep, how often 
and how much; how to plant, cultivate and care for, 
and this is supplemented by notes on cooking. We shall 
see something of this in subsequent pages; just here 
the point is that very important steps have been taken 
in the development of the art of getting much food 
from little land, and that thousands have been assisted 
to practical knowledge by means of these planting 
charts. 

In the equally essential matter of getting meat, milk 
and eggs from very small holdings, there has been even 
more progress along the lines of scientific and intensive 
development, and nearly as much has been accomplished 
in popular education. This is a fascinating branch of 
the new art, as we shall see. 

Few people have as yet realized anything approach- 
ing the true art of living well from a little land, in the 
sense of "Housekeeping by the Year," with programmed 
bills-of-fare, successional planting, scientific diet, high- 
ly-skilled cookery and artistic serving. Nevertheless, it 



102 City Homes on Country Lanes 

is amazing to observe how much comfort and even 
luxury has been obtained in thousands of instances, 
even by a crude approximation to the ideal. As to this, 
no one is better able to testify than I, who have so often 
been the guest in little homes where the thing is done, 
and where it has become a matter of genuine religion. 

Dear, dear, such dinners, compounded no more of ma- 
terial products than of spiritual ingredients the meat, 
vegetables and fruit liberally mixed with love and pride ! 
I recall one memorable Thanksgiving when away from 
home, where all the elements of the sumptuous annual 
dinner reached me by express. The turkey was a twen- 
ty-pounder; and that lordly bird, together with the 
vegetables, fruits and preserves, had all come from 
"farms" not exceeding an acre in dimensions nearly 
all from a single acre. Better even than the food was 
the letter tied to the turkey's leg a letter that tri- 
umphantly acclaimed our new way of life. 

Is it not inspiring to realize that the very best things 
in the world, even on the material side, are within reach 
of us all, when we shall command the genius to make 
the most of our environment? And this genius, I insist, 
will prove to be the genius of democracy the expres- 
sion of a divine aspiration for a better, freer and ampler 
life on the part of the masses of men and women who 
bear our burdens in war and peace. Even so, there 
must be leaders and prophets, men of vision who see 
clearly a little ahead of their time; tall men who hear 
the whispers of the Infinite. Of such men, in this line 
of work, the incomparable leader and prophet is my 
friend and comrade, Luther Burbank. 



CHAPTER IX 

LUTHER BURBANK AND THE NEW EARTH 

And he gave it for his opinion that whoever could make two 
ears of corn, or two blades of grass, to grow upon a spot of 
ground where only one grew before would deserve better of man- 
kind, and do more essential service to his country, than the whole 
race of politicians put together. 

Jonathan Swift. 

OF all the persons mentioned in these pages, Mr. 
Burbank is the most significant; and this not 
merely because of his worldwide fame, but much 
more because he is dealing at first hand with the very 
elements that enter into the daily life of the home-in-a- 
garden. I spent a never-to-be-forgotten day with him 
at Santa Rosa, going over the theme of this book with 
considerable care, and quite needlessly reassuring myself 
of his sympathy and support. He is, of course, the 
foremost man in the world in his line of work. 
And what is that line of work? 

Superficially it is plant-breeding, but fundament- 
ally, it is infinitely more than that. It goes to the 
heart of the problem of human life upon this planet. 
It affects first, and most palpably, the food supply of 
the people. Here, alone, its influence is not only in 
the highest degree creative, but revolutionary. It means 
not only more food, and more food per square foot of 
ground, but also better food. Follow this a step 
farther and you see how the common standard of living 

103 



104 City Homes on Country Lanes 

must rise with the growing abundance and quality of 
the products of the earth. Go farther still, and you 
will see how better living means better people; how 
larger and more profitable production mean that less 
land will serve the individual or family hence, smaller 
holdings ; how this, in turn, means more neighbors, 
better housed, fed and clad, and how that condition 
tends toward closer and higher social relationships. 

When you have seen all this, you have but crossed the 
doorstep of Luther Burbank's intellectual empire. Be- 
yond, in the vast interior, lies the domain of his influence 
that only may be characterized in terms of spiritual 
thought and action. Our dream of man as co-creator 
with God comes true. We stand erect, conscious of 
our Divine partnership. We accept nothing from Na- 
ture as finality. All is subject to change, to endless im- 
provement. We are to make the earth ever better and 
richer, more productive, and, hence, more profitable. 
The forces of evolution lie in our own hands. 

I have searched Mr. Burbank's writings for the best 
word to express the reach and splendor of his vision. 
But there is no best word. He must be studied as a 
whole. To apprehend him even measurably one must 
stand in his presence, as gentle as that of the poet 
Whittier and as spiritual as Emerson's. But perhaps 
the following quotations will help : 

"The vast possibilities of plant-breeding can hardly 
be estimated. It would not be difficult for one man 
to breed a new rye, wheat, barley, oats, or rice which 
would produce one grain more to each head, or a corn 
which would produce an extra kernel to each ear, an- 



Luther Burbank and the New Earth 105 

other potato to each plant, or an apple, plum, orange 
or nut to each tree. 

"What would be the result? In five staples only in 
the United States alone the inexhaustible forces of 
Nature would produce annually without effort and with- 
out cost, 5,200,000 extra bushels of corn, 15,000,000 
extra bushels of wheat, 20,000,000 extra bushels of 
oats, 1,500,000 extra bushels of barley, 21,000,000 
extra bushels of potatoes. 

"But these vast possibilities are not alone for one 
year, or for our own time or race, but are beneficent 
legacies for every man, woman or child who shall ever 
inhabit the earth. And who can estimate the elevating 
and refining influences and moral value of flowers with 
all their graceful forms and bewitching shades and com- 
binations of colors, and exquisitely varied perfumes? 
These silent influences are unconsciously felt even by 
those who do not appreciate them consciously, and thus, 
with better and still better fruits, nuts, grains, and 
flowers will the earth be transformed, man's thoughts 
turned from the base, destructive forces into the nobler 
productive ones which will lift him to higher planes of 
action toward that happy day when man shall offer his 
brother man, not bullets and bayonets but richer 
grains, better fruits, and fairer flowers." 

When I asked Mr. Burbank if he was training any 
one to carry on his work, he replied : "Thousands." At 
the moment, I did not understand, but later came com- 
prehension, and with it, a better sense of his greatness. 
This wonder-worker makes no concealment of his meth- 



106 City Homes on Country Lanes 

ods and no effort to monopolize the mighty forces which 
he has learned to appreciate and direct. The miracle 
of the new flower or fruit, or vegetable he would make 
as common as the sunshine. He would like to see a 
Luther Burbank in every garden, new light breaking on 
every horizon, and each morning another morning of 
creation. So would he pass the priceless heritage to 
the future. 

To study Luther Burbank as he is studied by the 
few, one joins the Burbank Society and reads the story 
of his work as it is set forth in his own twelve volumes 
under the editorship of Dr. Henry Smith Williams, the 
noted student, historian and social scientist of New 
York. But to study him as the many may do, one gets 
Dr. Williams' own volume, "Luther Burbank, His Life 
and Work." Here, in the compass of 329 pages, with 
many illustrations, one gets a swift summary of the 
man, his ways and his achievements. But in order that 
the mystery which surrounds his work in the minds of 
so many people may be modified, if not dissipated, the 
following is quoted from Dr. Williams' book: 

"The fundamental principles of plant development 
through which Mr. Burbank thought to develop new 
and improved varieties were not in themselves novel 
or revolutionary. They consisted essentially in the 
careful selection among a mass of plants of any in- 
dividual that showed exceptional qualities of a desirable 
type ; the saving of seed of this exceptional individual 
and the carrying out of the same process of selection 
among the progeny through successive generations. 

"Couple this method of selection and so-called line 
breeding with the method of cross-pollenizing different 




LUTHER BURBAXK 
Prophet and Exemplar of the New and Better Earth 



Luther Bwrbank and the New Earth 107 

varieties of species, to produce hybrid forms showing a 
tendency to greater variation or to the accentuation of 
desired characters, and we have in outline the funda- 
mental principles of plant-breeding as known to horti- 
culturists for generations, and as applied by Mr. Bur- 
bank from the outset of his career. But there were 
sundry highly essential details of modification that were 
introduced by the Santa Rosa experimenter, as will ap- 
pear presently. 

"Moreover, even in the application of the old familiar 
method, Mr. Burbank was able from the outset to gain 
exceptional results because of certain inherent quali- 
ties that peculiarly fitted him for the work. Among 
these qualities was his exceedingly acute vision, a re- 
markable color sense, and an almost abnormally de- 
veloped sense of smell and taste. Artists who have 
tested his eyes have declared that he can readily de- 
tect graduations of color that to the ordinary eye show 
no differentiation ; and it is a matter of hourly demon- 
stration that he can ferret out an individual flower hav- 
ing an infinitesimally modified odor in the midst of a bed 
of thousands of such plants, almost as a hunting dog 
detects the location of a grouse or partridge under 
cover. 

"Similarly, his exquisitely refined sense of taste 
guides him in selecting among thousands of individual 
plums, or cherries or grapes or apples or berries the 
one individual specimen that has the most delectable 
flavor or that shows a minute modification of flavor in 
the direction in which he is endeavoring to modify the 
variety. 

"The almost preternatural endowment of special 



108 City Homes on Country Lanes 

senses is supplemented by a knowledge of the coordina- 
tion of parts say between the stem or leaf and the 
future fruit of a plant that is so penetrating and 
mystifying as to seem intuitional, and to suggest occult 
powers of divination. 

"As an instance, you may see Mr. Burbank striding 
along a row of, let us say, plum seedlings comprising 
some thousands of plants, perhaps a foot high. He 
seems to inspect the little trees but casually, except 
that now and again he pauses for a moment to indicate 
with a motion of his hand that this or that plant has 
particularly attracted his attention. A helper, or 
more likely two helpers for one can scarcely keep up 
with the energetic leader will be at hand to note the 
signals ; and a bit of white cloth will be tied about each 
successively selected seedling; or two pieces of cloth, 
or even three, in case an individual has seemed to show 
quite exceptional promise. 

"And with that, one stage of the work of selection 
is finished. Perhaps ten thousand seedlings have been 
passed in review in a half hour, and conceivably fifty 
or a hundred have been selected for preservation. These 
have shown to the keen scrutiny of the plant experi- 
menter such qualities of stem and bud and leaf as to 
forecast the type of fruit sought to be developed in this 
particular experiment." 

The principles of selective breeding which Mr. Bur- 
bank employs apply to every department of production. 
He has used them not only in the production of new 
varieties, but even new species of fruits, berries, nuts, 
vegetables and grains. Of all his productions the Bur- 
bank potato, which he produced when 26 years of age, 



Luther Burbarik and the New Earth 109 

is doubtless the best known. This literally dominates 
its field ; something like 600,000,000 bushels have been 
grown to date. It by no means found early acceptance, 
however, and in this as in many other instances he has 
been made the victim of substitution. It is easy to 
imagine that many of his valuable creations now re- 
garded as matters of spectacular interest will some day 
be as generally used as his famous potato. How much 
this day will be retarded by the conscienceless sale of 
things pretended to be his which are not his at all, no 
one can say. 

I have long thought that I would rather have the 
opinion of Luther Burbank concerning the foundation 
principles of the new life of the land, than that of any 
other living man. His minutes are like diamonds, yet he 
lavished his precious time upon me, and never have I 
talked to any one else who listened with such perfect 
sympathy and complete comprehension. My highest 
hope has been that he would feel that his own work is 
of peculiar value to those who make loving use of a little 
land, and that for them it would mean better living 
and higher rewards for their labor. This hope is 
justified. 

I explained how the old forms of country life have 
failed; how the life of the land must be renewed, re- 
stored, made over; how the new appeal must be to the 
deepest instincts of the human heart, the new institu- 
tions expressive of the best ideals of democracy. His 
response was instant and enthusiastic. When I asked 
him how much land is really necessary for the average 
man to use, he replied: 

"A thousand acres for an Indian, a hundred acres 



110 City Homes on Country Lanes 

for a farmer, ten acres for an orchardist, one acre for 
a good market gardener, half an acre for a flower or 
seed man, and for an experimenter like myself, a grave- 
yard lot will do." 

I told him we were talking of a new science of living 
from the land, and that its first maxim is, "Feed your- 
self." I explained that the thought is not of a mean 
living, not of a bare subsistence, but of a bill-of-fare 
deliberately planned in advance, with a programme of 
ordered production to go with it, and that this bill-of- 
fare is intended to be luxurious in the wholesome sense 
of the term. He replied that this is the only sound 
principle, and that it is absolutely feasible for those 
who look to a little land for their living. "Let us 
analyze it a bit," I said. "While I have authentic 
records of those who have made an entire living, and a 
good one, from much less than an acre, I am neverthe- 
less told by well-meaning students of the land problem, 
including some in positions of authority, that an entire 
acre is necessary to produce vegetables alone for a 
family of three even in California." 

Mr. Burbank glanced at his secretary with a twinkle 
in his eye. He said: "We have a family of three and 
produce most of our vegetables, including carrots, beets, 
cabbages, celery, onions, spinach, lettuce and lettuce 
seed, in a garden 12x20 feet, or 240 square feet." 

He is very fond of asparagus and uses a variety of 
his own creation called "The Quality." A bed 12x12 
feet supplies his family twice a day. It reaches matur- 
ity some time earlier than the common variety, to 
which it is decidedly superior in size, color and delicacy. 
In referring to the longevity of asparagus, Mr. Bur- 



Luther Burbank and the New Earth 111 

bank spoke of one bed in England which is said to be 
100 years old. 

He does not raise potatoes, of which he eats com- 
paratively few, but all the other vegetables consumed 
by his family are raised in beds which represent a total 
of but 384 square feet. This is only one one-hundred- 
and-sixteenth of an acre ! This would leave better than 
ninety-nine-hundredths of an acre for a family to use 
for such other variety of vegetables as they might pre- 
fer ; for the few choice trees, vines and shrubs necessary 
to supply its fruits, for the ground on which the house 
would stand, and for whatever they might depend upon 
as the principal source of cash income, whether some 
sort of poultry, or choice products of the garden. 

For the comfort of home gardeners who may be 
struggling with poor soil, it is worth while to remark 
that the ground which now serves Mr. Burbank for his 
famous experimental garden was thought to be so poor 
that no one wanted it. He made it over to suit his 
purpose. His mention of the fact led to a discussion 
of the extent to which it is possible for the man who uses 
a small piece of ground, not only to change the soil, but, 
in a sense, to alter the climate. Prince Kropotkin tells 
us how the French gardeners have taken the raw edge 
off their climate and forced the growth of their plants, 
not only by the use of glass for cover, but by the con- 
struction of stone walls which hold and reflect the heat 
while also furnishing perfect protection from the winds. 

In the matter of scientific and intensive use of the 
soil, we have not touched the hem of the garment in this 
country as yet. We have run to broad acres and 
speculation, to machinery and hired men. We are just 



City Homes on Country Lanes 

now at the dawn of a new and infinitely finer day. Not 
broad acres, but little lands ; not speculation, but home 
building; not the grudging labor of hirelings, but the 
loving labor of self-employing proprietors these are 
the signs and tokens of the new day. Of that day 
Luther Burbank is the prophet beyond anything we 
have realized heretofore. It is not merely the dollars- 
and-cents side of his work, though that is important. 
Surely, it is important to improve the quality of fruit, 
to double or treble the productive capacity of a plant, 
to bring a vegetable into the market four or six weeks 
ahead of its season, and thus to increase the earning 
capacity of the man who lives from the soil. But even 
more important is the spirit which he puts into his 
work, and which in time must be diffused among the 
masses engaged in the tilling of the land. It is the 
spirit which calls for better and ever better things, 
which tends constantly and strongly toward higher 
standards of labor and of living, and puts science in 
place of chance. This is the spirit which is to give us 
the New Earth. 

I asked Mr. Burbank what of his own creations were 
particularly adapted to serve as a cash surplus crop 
for the home gardener. He mentioned his new tomato, 
which anticipates the usual season by four to six weeks 
as something that will be particularly profitable. He 
recurred again to the "Quality" asparagus, which is so 
great a favorite upon his own table. The Burbank 
Giant Crimson rhubarb was also mentioned for winter 
and early spring. Then he sent out for some specimens 
of his improved "balloon" raspberry, averaging about 
three inches around. They were so big I could hardly 



Luther Burbank and the New Earth 113 

believe them to be raspberries at all, at first, and yet 
very sweet and indescribably delicate. He has picked 
253 of these berries at one time from a single bush. 
And they ripen four weeks before the common rasp- 
berry. They also anticipate blackberries and straw- 
berries by something like six weeks. He spoke of his 
blackberries, particularly two varieties, the "Himalaya" 
and the "thornless," as well adapted to home gardens. 

In discussing fruit for the benefit of the home table, 
I asked him what he thought of the dwarf trees. "Why 
not several varieties on a single tree of ordinary size?" 
he suggested. It seems he has one apple tree now bear- 
ing 526 varieties. That is an experimental affair, of 
course ; but he says it is entirely practicable for a fam- 
ily to raise four favorite varieties on the same tree. 
He recommends this plan as preferable to growing dwarf 
trees, even from the standpoint of economizing space. 
Asked what else he would suggest as peculiarly suitable 
for those who might wish to supplement their income by 
selling some surplus from their gardens, Mr. Burbank 
answered : 

"Improved golden bantam sweet-corn; cocoanut 
squash, which requires little space, keeps good through- 
out nearly the whole year, and is of most desirable size 
and quality ; the production of various herbs and seeds, 
specializing on one or more." 

Whenever I walk in a garden and enjoy the oppor- 
tunity to eat the fruit directly from tree or vine, I 
find myself envying those who have nothing to do with 
the grocer and the various middlemen through whom 
the people of cities get their supplies. This was par- 
ticularly the case as I sampled the new varieties in Mr. 



114 City Home* on Country Lanes 

Burbank's garden. I do not know how his latest straw- 
berry will taste when you get it through the channels 
of commerce, but if you should taste it as it comes from 
the vine, sweet with California sunshine, you would think 
a poem on the spot. 

I did not seek to draw out my distinguished host on 
the subject of intensive poultry culture and other 
economic hopes of little landing not strictly limited to 
the use of the soil. I was content to know that he be- 
lieves the garden will do its generous share for the fam- 
ily table, and, from the surplus of berries, vegetables 
and flowers, contribute to the necessary cash income. 
But I was delighted to discover that his home dairy 
consists of two beautiful Saanen goats. When I told 
him I was an enthusiast on the future of the milch goat, 
he said: "So am I," and proceeded to describe the su- 
periority of goat's milk over that of cows. 

Mr. Burbank believes in the new life of the land as 
the solution of our national social problem the prob- 
lem of accommodating a vast increase in our citizenship 
in a higher degree of average comfort than that which 
now prevails. He says : "It is the way to double our 
population." 

No phase of Mr. Burbank's philosophy has chal- 
lenged public opinion more sharply than that part 
which is embodied in his book, "The Training of the 
Human Plant." He is a lover of children, as of flowers 
and plants and birds, and he is very deeply concerned 
for the future of the American child. In the abnormal 
growth of cities he reads a deep menace to the welfare 
of coming generations. He says: 

"Every child should have mudpies, grasshoppers, 



Luther Burbank and the New Earth 115 

water-bugs, tadpoles, frogs, mud-turtles, elderberries, 
wild strawberries, acorns, chestnuts ; trees to climb, 
brooks to wade in; water-lilies, wood-chucks, bats, bees, 
butterflies, various animals to pet, hay-fields, pine cones, 
rocks to roll, sand, snakes, huckleberries, and hornets; 
and any child who has been deprived of these has been 
deprived of the best part of his education." 

The man who feels that way about children must 
yearn for the restoration of a wholesome life upon the 
land, even as some men yearn for military preparedness. 
Since no thoughtful man can fail to note that the older 
forms of country life have lost their hold on the human 
heart, it follows as a corollary that new forms, more 
attractive and more satisfying, must be created precise- 
ly as Luther Burbank has created new forms of plant 
life. This being so, I never felt it was necessary to 
ask him how he stood on the question ; yet, it is com- 
forting to be assured that this great man, who knows 
and loves the soil as perhaps no other man in the world 
knows and loves it, believes in the saving grace of the 
New Earth. 



CHAPTER X 

THE SPIRIT OF CREATIVE GARDENING 

Oh, when I am safe in my sylvan home, 

I tread on the pride of Greece and Rome; 

And when I am stretched beneath the pines, 

Where the evening star so holy shines, 

I laugh at the lore and pride of man, 

At the Sophist schools and the learned clan; 

For what are they all in their high conceit, 

\Vhen man in the bush with God may meet? 

Emerson. 

IT is the spirit of Luther Burbank, far more than his 
actual achievement as a plant-breeder, that is to 
count in the future life of the land, and especially 
of the garden home. Authorities disagree as to the 
importance of his achievement. Prof. Hugo De Vries, 
of the University of Amsterdam, in Holland, declared 
that "there is no one in Europe who can even compare 
with him." On the other hand, there are critical voices 
in American scientific circles that belittle the importance 
of his work, and apparently resent his world-wide fame. 
In the meantime, his influence is extending year by year, 
and his creations are multiplying, while the freight- 
trains from California groan under the load of products 
his genius gave to the gardener and orchardist in former 
years. 

There are, of course, many forces engaged in making 
"better and still better fruits, nuts, grains and flowers," 
as Mr. Burbank insistently urges. Year after year 

116 



The Spirit of Creative Gardening 117 

improved varieties are introduced by seed houses and 
nurserymen, while Science is carrying on its subtle work 
of research and experimentation in a thousand ways. 
The experimental and demonstration work of the United 
States Department of Agriculture, already of vast 
scope and immeasurable importance, is constantly in- 
creasing and extending its practical value throughout 
the country. Men and women of scientific taste and 
aptitude, sometimes beginning with little technical 
knowledge, but developing it as they go along, are do- 
ing wonderful things in a quiet way. One such instance 
came under my observation in the extreme southwestern 
corner of the United States. 

Mr. and Mrs. George B. Frank established experi- 
mental gardens near the famous artist colony of Gross- 
mont, ten miles from San Diego, California. Among 
other things they perfected a new string bean, unusually 
large, crisp and meaty and without strings. It is a 
handsome, green-mottled bean, which attracts buyers 
by its appearance, and sells at a fancy price in the mar- 
ket. It bears heavily, and shows a higher percentage 
of butter fat and protein than any other variety. 

The orchid lettuce, which originated in France, where 
it grew luxuriously but would not head, was perfected 
in the Frank gardens. It has a large, loose head, with 
purplish and reddish leaves, deliciously crisp and tender. 
It makes an attractive salad leaf, and Mrs. Frank de- 
veloped a purple potato to go with it, so she could 
serve what she calls a "violet luncheon." To carry 
this fancy still further Mr. Frank crossed a tomato 
with an egg-plant. The result is a very mild-flavored 
tomato, large and solid, of rich egg-plant purple. 



118 City Homes on Country Lanes 

Among other Frank creations are a mottled squash; 
unusually sweet corn; an improved cucumber, reaching 
fifteen inches in length, and tipping the scales at three 
and one-half pounds, while remaining crisp and tender. 
He has also gone far in the quest of a seedless water- 
melon. 

This is but one among a thousand examples of what 
is being accomplished by plant-breeders whose work has 
not yet attracted wide attention, but whose silent labors 
are constantly swelling the tide of progressive horti- 
culture. 

It is not to be expected, and perhaps not to be de- 
sired, that all home gardeners shall attempt to become 
scientific plant-breeders ; but the thing that is eminently 
desirable is that they shall take on the spirit of creative 
gardening, sharing Luther Burbank's faith in the po- 
tentialities of the New Earth. When this spirit fills 
the minds and hearts of our people we shall see a 
marked advance in every department better food, bet- 
ter homes, better people, better everything entering into 
the common life. This is the ideal: We are not to be 
satisfied with things as they are; even with the fruits 
and vegetables that Nature gives us. We are to insist 
upon the best that can be done in the light of scientific 
knowledge, becoming partners in the work of creation 
at least in an humble sense. 

The first step of this process is to adopt the new 
methods and new products as they come from the 
master minds, instead of being satisfied with the old. 
It is amazing to know how interest in the garden the 
interest of one's self and of one's neighbors is quick- 
ened and freshened in this way. To grow a tomato that 



The Spirit of Creative Gardening 119 

is less acid than the common varieties, one that matures 
more quickly, thus escaping the early and late frosts 
(for the tomato is a delicate plant) is to make garden- 
ing an almost exciting adventure. So it is with the 
whole range of production. The adventure goes on to 
the dinner-table, when the new products are served to 
one's friends. And if there is a little surplus for mar- 
ket, and the product is sufficiently superior to bring a 
few cents more per pound than the common varieties, 
the adventure culminates in a deep sense of satisfaction. 
There is a principle here that reaches far, and is truly 
creative. 

I am thinking as I write of one small home at Palo 
Alto, California, which admirably illustrates this prin- 
ciple, and its influence upon owner and neighbors. 

George Hobden had a lot 50x112% feet; in all 5,625 
square-feet about one-seventh of an acre. The house 
occupied 1,225 square-feet; the area for walks and 
driveway 1,825 square-feet; and the rabbit house 500 
square-feet ; so the vacant space left for cultivation was 
only 2,075 square-feet ; and yet he had room for 22 fruit 
trees, some of them seven years old, and in full bear- 
ing; and for a good garden. His total investment for 
land, house and improvements was no more than $2,700. 
But this was made possible because he had done much 
of the work himself. 

During his boyhood days in England Mr. Hobden 
learned the art of training trees to grow on walls or 
trellises like grapevines. This enabled him to economize 
space. He also adopted the method of scientific graft- 
ing of several fruits upon a single stock, so that start- 
ing with a peach-tree, he had branches producing apri- 



120 City Homes on Country Lanes 

cots, nectarines, Satsuma plums, Imperial prunes; and 
all growing upon one tree. Within his box-bordered 
walks he raised vegetables in the most intensive fashion. 

The rent-free home, vegetables and fruit, with meat 
from the rabbitry, represented quite a part of the fam- 
ily living, even upon this very small plot of ground. 
But that is not the point of the story. The point is 
that Mr. Hobden made a very distingue garden, which, 
on that account, became a rare joy to himself and to 
his neighbors even an object of public pride. Making 
a liberal investment of love and skill, he collected gen- 
erous dividends of satisfaction. 

If this unusual spirit can be made the common spirit, 
it will result in a great uplift of garden-home standards, 
with a wholesome reaction upon the character of the 
people themselves. 

Much has been said about vegetables, yet the fruits 
of tree and vine are equally important in the scheme of 
luxurious living for average people. I have a friend in 
California who never speaks of fruit trees, but always 
of "food trees." It is an illuminating phrase, because 
it brings home to the mind the real economic significance 
of the garden home. The fruit tree is to be planted and 
lovingly nourished, as one of the bread-winners. We 
shall count it "present" at breakfast, lunch, and dinner 
not only in "the good old summer time" and in 
autumn harvest days, but in the winter, when it speaks 
in the language of jams and preserves. It is not a case 
of "Everybody works but father." In the garden home 
everybody and everything works not grudgingly, but 
willingly and lovingly not only father, mother and 



The Spirit of Creative Gardening 

the children, but every inch of the ground, together 
with the sunshine, the dew and the rain. Man and Na- 
ture smile upon the home-in-a-garden. It is in tune with 
the Infinite ! 

The hope of spiritualizing the future life of the soil 
lies right here in getting large numbers of people to ac- 
cept the creative state of mind and carry it through all 
phases of their daily work. The fact that they are 
working for themselves on their own ground, where they 
are not, like most of the country-minded now dwelling 
in city apartments, mere tenants at will, but engaged in 
the evolution of their own homes this fact should of 
itself go far towards producing the right mental atti- 
tude. The further fact that they are surrounded by 
neighbors living under the same conditions and sharing 
the same ideals should count in the same direction. The 
fact that these people are escaping, so far as their home 
life and work are concerned, from the regimentation of 
the city experience, and finding opportunity for the 
expression of individuality, ought to help powerfully. 

Surely, there could be no finer soil for the cultivation 
of the highest attributes of family life, as well as of 
citizenship, than that offered by the garden city, under-, 
taken in the right spirit and organized in the right way. 
But, in the last analysis, all this will depend on the 
people themselves. It is the old story: "You can lead 
a horse to water, but you can't make him drink." 

What I am saying is that up to this time no one has 
supplied the necessary "leading." There is plenty of 
"water," and there is no doubt about the popular 
"thirst" for the garden home and all it implies in the 



City Homes on Country Lanes 

way of genuine freedom for our people. That they will 
make good use of the opportunity when at last it shall 
be offered, I personally have no more doubt than of 
the rising of to-morrow's sun. 



CHAPTER XI 

THE OLD HEN IN A NEW ENVIRONMENT 

"Ma Duck, she lays a bigger egg 

Than the helpful hen can lay; 
But when she's through she cackles not 

But simply walks away. 
And so we scorn the silent duck; 

But the helpful hen we prize; 
Which is only another way to say 

That it pays to advertise." 

THE garden and the little family orchard, how- 
ever lovingly cared for, supply but a part of the 
luxurious fare that must be brought within reach 
of every household. The good old family hen! What 
visions of fresh eggs and fat spring chickens are evoked 
by the mention of her name ! What is breakfast without 
a fresh egg? And how rare is a really fresh egg in these 
days of urban congestion! Who ever had too much 
chicken especially fried chicken? These things are 
the staples of life; and the garden home without a 
poultry yard would fall far short of fulfilling its mis- 
sion. 

This does not mean, as the reader may hastily assume, 
the old sort of poultrycraf t that turns the chickens loose 
to run all over the lot, destroying the garden and 
annoying the neighbors. We are to have the old hen, 
but in a new environment in other words, the intensive 
hen to go with the intensive garden. There have been 
wonderful developments along these lines during the 

123 



City Homes on Country Lanes 

past few years, especially in California, where 
thousands of people are getting their living in whole 
or in part from very small holdings. Such people have 
often found that the best chance for cash income lies 
in specializing in poultry; and that the way to secure 
heavy egg production on the smallest space is to engage 
in the intensive cultivation of the laying hen. 

The old plan of turning the hens out to pasture in the 
neighborhood at large is completely abolished. Mrs. 
Hen is always "at home" to her callers. She is fre- 
quently without a family of her own no husband or 
children, but plenty of brothers and sisters. Infertile 
eggs are preferred in the market, and sometimes com- 
mand a superior price. For the increase of the flock, 
setting eggs are purchased; or, more frequently, day- 
old chicks, which are turned out by the million in large 
hatcheries. The egg-farmer specializes on eggs, while 
others specialize on fine settings and ready-made chicks. 

The plan is ideal for the garden home, where hun- 
dreds or thousands of families may be living on lots 
ranging from a quarter of an acre to one or two acres 
in size; and where the object of the small, neat, well- 
kept poultry house is to supply the family with plenty 
of fresh eggs and fat chickens to go with the other 
products of the place in making up the elements of 
the luxurious table. There are so many methods of 
intensive poultry culture now in vogue that it is diffi- 
cult to do more here than to indicate the place of the 
laying hen in this new way of life. It is plain, of course, 
that we must have eggs, and we must have chickens; 
just as we must have the nicest vegetables and fruits, 
and all kinds of delicious jams and preserves; and it is 



The Old Hen in a New Environment 125 

very important to know that the little intensive poultry 
house is precisely as practical as the little intensive 
garden and orchard. 

The several systems now contending for popularity 
differ in their methods of housing and feeding, but they 
stand together on one fundamental principle, which is 
the principle of segregation. This principle was the 
discovery of a Mr. Philo, of Elmira, New York, whose 
ideas created a furore in the poultry world some years 
ago. His views were so radical as to arouse the scorn 
of professional poultrymen, but the promised profits 
were so alluring as to induce thousands of novices to go 
into the business in their backyards. The Philo plan 
provided for a unit of six hens, kept in a pen 4x6 feet, 
and never allowed to run at large. These units, of 
course, might be multiplied indefinitely. It was claimed 
that the plan would result in a very great increase of 
egg-production as compared with the old methods, with 
cash profits in proportion. Strange as it may seem, the 
plan was not disappointing, so far as egg-production 
was concerned. Hens kept in this way were far more 
prolific than an equal number herded in large flocks and 
permitted their freedom. For those who desired to 
keep but a few hens for home use, the Philo system was 
entirely successful; but it broke down when extended 
to large proportions because of the immense detail and 
back-breaking drudgery involved in caring for many 
small coops. Eggs were produced in satisfying quanti- 
ties, but at a cost which made it impracticable from a 
commercial standpoint. 

The valuable lesson which Philo taught the world was 
that a few well-bred, well-fed, well-cared-for fowls, 



City Homes on Country Lanes 

segregated and kept in close confinement, would produce 
more eggs and earn more money per hen than could be 
realized by old-fashioned methods. In other words, the 
modern intensive hen is a better business proposition 
than the ancient promiscuous hen. Many enterprising 
poultry experts proceeded to build on this principle, 
with excellent results. My own favorite among them 
all is Charles Weeks, of Palo Alto, California a man 
of such distinction in his line of work, and so good a 
prophet and exemplar of the theme of this book, that 
we must pause for a moment to note his significance in 
the movement. 

Mr. Weeks was born on a farm in Indiana, and fell 
deeply in love with the poultry game at an early age. 
In spite of this, he turned to the big city for his oppor- 
tunity, like many other country-bred boys of liberal 
education. He found no difficulty in getting remunera- 
tive employment, first in Chicago, then in New York; 
and doubtless would have made his way in city life, but 
he was distinctly country-minded in temperament and 
never quite satisfied with life among the skyscrapers. 
Passing up Fourth Avenue one day, his ears were 
assailed by the welcome sound of cackling hens and 
crowing cocks announcing the annual poultry show in 
Madison Square Garden. He bought a ticket and went 
in to feast his eyes on the poultry aristocracy of Amer- 
ica. That experience rekindled his early love, and 
spoiled him for the city; his heart was set on egg- 
farming as a profession. I use the word "profession" 
advisedly, because Mr. Weeks had thought of it from 
the beginning as something that should be approached 
and dealt with in the highest professional spirit, with 



The Old Hen in a New Environment 127 

the advantage of all available knowledge. With this 
purpose in view, he turned his back on the city, going 
first to Indiana. He soon decided, however, that Cali- 
fornia was the better field, and it was there, after a hard 
struggle covering a period of a dozen years, that he 
finally evolved into a thoroughly successful egg-farmer 
and expert authority on the subject. 

Mr. Weeks tried many different methods. His hous- 
ing and feeding plans were never precisely alike for any 
two successive years, until he evolved his present system 
in 1916. When he began, he thought ten acres a small 
farm for his purpose. When he ended his experiments 
he had demonstrated that one acre was ample for an 
average family, and two or three acres about all that 
should be undertaken under any circumstances. He had 
satisfied himself that he could subsist on even less than 
one acre possibly so little as one-half or one-quarter 
of an acre ; but he would not like to do so, nor would he 
advise any one else to undertake it with a view of getting 
their entire living, and a really good living, from the 
land. I mention these lower figures only as a means of 
emphasizing the very intensive character of the system 
worked out by him, and widely adopted throughout the 
length and breadth of the Pacific Coast. 

The Weeks poultry system is ideal for the home-in-a- 
garden because it occupies so little space. The unit he 
arrived at after years of experimenting with the segre- 
gation principle is twenty hens and no rooster that 
is, for house and market eggs. These twenty hens 
are confined in a house 8x8 feet, or 64 square-feet; 5 
feet high at the rear; 7% feet in front (open wire 
front) ; and 3-foot roof projection, to shut out the rain 



128 City Homes on Country Lanes 

and furnish protection for the attendant. The object 
of the system is to economize labor to the last degree. 
This is accomplished by a unique feeding system which 
can be operated wholly from the outside. The eggs are 
also within easy reach from the front door and it is 
rarely necessary to enter the house, even for cleaning, 
which is done with a long-handled rake. One peculiar 
feature of the system is that clean sand is used on the 
floor instead of straw. This makes it very easy to clean 
the pen with a rake, but the principal object is to avoid 
the dust which arises from the hen's scratching in the 
straw, and which is a prolific cause of disease. 

Mr. Weeks is a profound believer in the efficiency of 
a combination of green food so nicely mixed, chopped 
and served that it does, indeed, look good enough for 
anybody to eat. This, as well as the dry food and 
water-basins, is kept constantly before the little flock. 
There is no lack of exercise, because the pen is arranged 
in such a way as to keep the hens very active in the 
course of the day's work. It is important to quote him 
at this point: 

"Twenty hens, well bred, well fed, and with quarters 
kept sanitary in this little pen, are good for at least 
$2.00 per year, net profit above all expenses. These 
twenty hens have nice sharp sand upon the ground-floor 
and roosting boards, which is raked clean regularly. 
They have dry mash and mixed grain by them con- 
tinually; the^y can stick their heads through to the 
green trough outside and eat green feed every hour 
during the day ; they drink water from clean, galvanized 
buckets on the outside; they dust in the sand; they 
jump up to the feed-hopper; they jump down again to 



Tht Old Hen in a New Environment 129 

the green- feed trough ; they run to the water ; they hop 
up to the egg boxes (which, by the way, is the most im- 
portant move of the day), and after depositing their 
board bill and rent, plus the extra profit, they jump 
down and up again to the perches for an afternoon rest, 
or stretch out in the afternoon sunshine which comes in 
through the western window. Their whole day is given 
up to their own individual care ; and with all the neces- 
saries before them, all the time is available for making 
eggs. With their morning sun-bath and noon sand-bath, 
free from draft or foul, dusty air with all these ideal 
conditions they have got to either 'lay or bust !* " 

The home gardener who wants eggs and chickens only 
for home use, would need but a single unit under this 
plan, but the housing can be indefinitely extended, and 
does, as a matter of fact, extend for hundreds of feet in 
many instances. The drawbacks of the Philo system 
are not present here, because of the very great economy 
secured in all the operations of the system. An average 
family can readily care for 1,000 hens. In fact, Mr. 
Weeks is now surrounded by hundreds of families work- 
ing on the basis of 1,000 hens on a single acre, with 
ample room for the home and home garden, as well as all 
the green food required for the poultry. Locally, the 
system has been almost universally adopted. 

Mr. Weeks has an annual gathering at his home, 
attended by representative poultrymen from all over 
the Pacific Coast, so that for years his methods have 
been brought under the white light of publicity and 
criticism freely invited. It should by no means be in- 
ferred that everybody agrees with him in all details. 
On the contrary, many who admire and use the system, 



130 City Homes on Country Lanes 

modify it in certain respects usually in the direction 
of increasing the size of the unit flock, or adding small 
yards at the rear of the house, on the theory that it is 
a trifle rough on the hen to keep her constantly con- 
fined ; that she should have a chance to get out occasion- 
ally and kick up her heels. Mr. Weeks believes that 
space is used more profitably by making it produce 
such things as kale and mangel-wurzel beets, and that 
while the privilege of the run of the yard may indeed be 
agreeable to the hen, it adds nothing to her health or 
efficiency. 

The thing that interests us just now is that while 
we are to deal with the good old family hen, she is to be 
placed in entirely new environment. Otherwise it would, 
perhaps, not be feasible to create thousands of garden 
homes around all the great cities of the land with such 
density as to enable them to enjoy all the benefits of the 
needed public utilities, and such other advantages as 
we covet for the home-in-a-garden. 

A thoroughly representative experience for our pres- 
ent purpose is that of John W. Gottsch, of San Ysidro, 
near San Diego, California. His home occupies about 
one-third of an acre, and is surrounded by near neigh- 
bors on every hand. He is busily engaged, not only with 
his trade as a plumber, but also as manager of a public 
water system, with many consumers. Necessarily his 
poultry venture is a side issue, like his vegetables, berries 
and fruit trees, rather than his main support. He does, 
however, realize all the advantages we are claiming foi 
the home gardener of the future not only by saving 
rent and reducing living costs to the minimum, but by 
enjoying all neighborhood advantages and proximity 



The Old Hen in a New Environment 131 

to a large city. He keeps more hens than needed for 

his home use following the Weeks plan; and here 
are the exact results for the year 1919: 

Credit. 

Feed on hand December 31, 1919 $ 57.87 

Total cash received for eggs 773.61 

Total cash received for poultry 103.54 

Eggs used at home 38.45 

Poultry used at home 15.38 

Value of stock on hand Dec. 31, 1919: 

87 hens at $1.20 each 104.40 

136 pullets at $1.50 each 204.00 

6 Bantam hens, at 35 cents each 2.10 

5 cockerels, 20 Ibs. each 6.40 

2 cocks, 10 Ibs. each 1.50 

1 Bantam cock .35 



$1,307.80 
Debit. 
Total outlay for feed, chicks, disinfectants, 

sand, freight, etc $697.42 

Value of 116 hens on hand Jan. 1, 1919 137.50 834.92 



Profit for the year $ 472.88 

Here is a cash income equal to nearly $40 a month ; 
possibly enough to pay the "store bill" of a family 
situated like that of Mr. Gottsch. Probably it would 
more than keep up the monthly payments on the aver- 
age garden holding near any of our large cities. I see 
many a commuter coming to town with a basket of fresh 
eggs, to be delivered to some private customer at full 
retail price, and I observe the smile of satisfaction as he 
pockets the money, saying to himself: "So much more 
to apply on the little home." Furthermore, the income 
from surplus eggs would enable many an individual, 
either man or woman, to retire comfortably after pass- 



City Homes on Cowntry Lanes 

ing middle age, though it might be necessary to increase 
the number of units, which would be entirely feasible for 
one having the whole day at his disposal. 

I am thinking all the time of those who will say : "Oh, 
yes, it can be done in California, but nowhere else." 
And my uniform reply is : "It can be done anywhere in 
the United States, and in many places better than in 
California." The rest of the country does not need the 
California climate half so much as it needs the Cali- 
fornia spirit ; or, if I may descend to the vernacular, the 
California "punch." 

Yes, the home-in-a-garden will have plenty of fresh 
eggs and fried chicken, to say nothing of chicken in 
many other forms. But this is by no means all that 
is to go on those luxurious tables. It will not do to 
confine our diet to one kind of meat, however good it is. 



CHAPTER XII 

THE RABBIT IN THE GARDEN ECONOMY 

THE place of the chicken is well established on 
every bill-of-fare. Not so the rabbit at least, 
in America. And yet, rabbit meat is as white 
and delicate as chicken, rather more nutritious, and now 
often preferred by physicians in prescribing for con- 
valescents ; and the rabbit is an ideal kind of livestock 
for the garden home. Like the chicken, it lives largely 
from the surplus greens in the garden, and is amenable 
to the most intensive methods of housing and feeding, 
so that it may be kept, even in goodly numbers, on a 
very small space of ground. But, unlike the chicken, 
the rabbit requires a friendly propaganda to make its 
virtues understood and enable it to win its rightful 
place in the household, the restaurant, and the hotel. 
During the past few years this propaganda has come 
into being in the form of a strong national association, 
with many local branches and a growing membership, 
with annual rabbit shows in many leading cities. It has 
its literature, periodicals, and specialists in different 
departments. During the War it attracted the atten- 
tion of the Government, which turned to this humble 
quarter as a means of increasing the country's meat 
supply. 

In Europe, the rabbit is an old story. In 1912, for 

133 



134 City HoTnes on Country Lanes 

example, France sold, through its municipal market 
alone, some 80,000,000 rabbits, and millions more were 
distributed through other channels. Before the War, 
London was using 500,000 a week mostly imported 
from Belgium, with a net profit of about a million dol- 
lars a month to the Belgian producers. 

Formerly, the wild rabbit had been regarded as the 
worst of pests in Australia, and was exterminated by 
every possible means. But, during the War, Australia 
was commanded to conserve her rabbit supply. The 
animals were killed on an enormous scale, frozen and 
shipped to the armies in France. 

In the United States, until quite recently, rabbits 
have been treated as pets ; they had no economic stand- 
ing whatever. Now they are rapidly coming into their 
own as a standard meat in the market, while rabbitcraft 
is developing along scientific lines, and more and more 
offering a delightful occupation for men and women. 
Their place in the economy of the garden home is un- 
questionable. They add both quantity and variety to 
the luxurious table, while enhancing the fascination of 
the daily tasks and swelling the joy of the family. 

The new vogue of rabbitcraft should not be con- 
founded with the wild boom in Belgian hares which swept 
over the country a quarter of a century ago. That was 
purely speculative in its conception, and ridiculous or 
tragic in its consequences, according to the tempera- 
ment and means of the persons involved in the enter- 
prise. Some of them paid as much as a thousand dol- 
lars for a pedigreed buck. Nearly all imbibed the full 
spirit of Colonel Sellers, and came to believe "There's 
millions in it !" Everybody raised rabbits, but scarcely 




BABBITS FOE MEAT AND FUR 

1. Dutch rabbit. 2. Himalaya. 3. Belgian hare. 4. American Blue. 5. Angora. 6. 
Checkered giant 



The Rabbit in the Garden Economy 135 

anybody ate them. The game was to raise fine breeding 
stock and dispose of it at fabulous profit to a new group 
of beginners, all of whom expected to get rich in the 
same way. So long as everybody was a buyer, and no- 
body a seller, the business flourished like unto the pro- 
verbial "green bay tree." But, when conditions were 
reversed and no one bought, while everybody was trying 
to sell, the business fell like a house of cards. 

The new movement is wholly different. It aims first 
to supply the family with delicious and wholesome meat, 
and then to cater to the limited but growing demand in 
the public market. Probably this demand is stronger 
on the Pacific Coast than in the East, since the rabbits 
are more in evidence there, both in the market and in 
daily quotations ; yet, one now sees them in Washing- 
ton, New York and Boston, and dealers say they are 
gradually gaining in favor. The staple breeds are the 
Belgian Hare, New Zealand Red, and Flemish Giant; 
but at a rabbit show one sees a bewildering variety of 
all colors and sizes some of them frankly fancy stock, 
raised mostly for pleasure yet all perfectly good for 
eating purposes. 

Rabbit meat is served in every way that chicken is. 
served fried, stewed, or stuffed and baked like a tur- 
key. The rabbit contains very little fat, and for that 
reason is one of the most digestible of meats. In later 
pages we shall deal with the mechanics of the subject, 
and see something of the best scientific methods of feed- 
ing and housing, as these have developed during the past 
few years since the American friends of the rabbit bent 
their minds seriously to the subject. 

There is no more enthusiastic friend of the rabbit 



136 City Homes on Country Lanes 

industry than E. W. Nelson, Chief of the United States 
Bureau of Biological Survey. In Farmers' Bulletin 
1090, issued by the Department of Agriculture, under 
date of March, 1920, Mr. Nelson said: 

"The saving and earning possibilities of rabbit-rais- 
ing are illustrated by the following concrete examples of 
what has actually been done: 

"One resident of Kansas City, Kansas, has raised 300 
to 400 pounds of rabbit meat a year for his own table 
at a cost of only 8 to 10 cents a pound. A large re- 
ligious institution in Nebraska that has raised rabbits 
instead of poultry reports the meat more satisfactory 
than chicken and the experiment profitable. According 
to a former county commissioner of the State of Wash- 
ington, rabbits were grown on the county farm to pro- 
vide a substitute for chicken for the county hospitals ; 
the initial stock, numbering 119 rabbits, increased to 
1,200 in 10 months, besides those used in the hospitals. 
A high-school boy in Iowa who breeds registered stock 
on a space 33 feet square in his back yard, raised and 
sold enough rabbits in 1918 to clear more than $1,200. 
An Ohio farmer sends more than 400 pounds of rabbit 
meat a week to city restaurants, yet is unable to meet 
the demand. 

"These are not isolated cases; they are simply ex- 
amples of what has been done in rabbit raising, and are 
an indication of what this industry is likely to become 
when it is generally understood." 

However, I am not now dealing with rabbitcraft as a 
source of cash income, but only as a natural and logical 
means of catering to the meat supply of the garden 
home. I cannot, however, refrain from mentioning the 



The Rabbit m the Garden Economy 137 

experience of an acquaintance who found that from the 
increase of ten rabbit does occupying but a small space 
in his yard, he was able to provide the entire meat 
supply of his family. This does not mean that they ate 
rabbit meat exclusively, though they ate it often, and 
insisted that it was their favorite meat. They had, 
however, many more than they could consume and sent 
the surplus young stock to market to be sold for cash. 
This cash was sufficient to buy all the beef, pork, mut- 
ton and fowl that they required even the Thanks- 
giving turkey and Christmas goose. Thus the rabbit 
solved their whole problem of the high cost of living, 
so far as meat was concerned. 

I am a strong believer in the possibilities of the rabbit 
industry as a source of cash profit to large numbers of 
producers; but know from experience and observation 
that there are certain conditions precedent to the real- 
ization of this hope. To begin with, the rabbit must be 
more widely known and generally appreciated, so that 
in this country, as in Europe, millions of people will 
look to it as a part of their diet, as they now look to 
beef and chicken. This condition is coming a little 
nearer year by year, and when it shall be fully developed 
will create an enormous demand for the toothsome and 
wholesome rabbit. 

Another important condition will be the solution of 
the problem of canning rabbit meat so that it can be 
shipped long distances and kept indefinitely, like other 
canned products. Some admirable experimental work 
has been done in this direction by Gordon Phair, of 
Los Angeles, and perhaps by others. I have often had 
the pleasure of serving his potted rabbit to my friends 



138 City Homes on Country Lanes 

at the club, and listening to their expressions of sur- 
prise and delight. "It beats potted chicken out of 
sight!" was the common remark. It sold well, too, in 
the finer stores of New York. This, however, was only 
experimental encouraging, but not conclusive. To 
build a great industry would require a large and regular 
supply of raw material, ample manufacturing facilities, 
and good publicity, with adequate financial backing. 
Such an industry would be quite ideal in connection with 
a garden city, or a series of garden cities, provided 
there were large numbers of people who cared to venture 
beyond the supply of their own tables. The rabbit I 
am sure would do its part, and do it well. 

Another very interesting aspect of the economic rab- 
bit is its value as a source of fur supply. Few realize 
how extensively it serves this purpose now. Perhaps 
some people who are wearing various kinds of "Coney" 
and imitation "Seal" are really much better acquainted 
with the rabbit than they realize. The common rabbit 
fur is used in vast quantities in the making of felt hats, 
and the hide is converted into glue. While Australian 
rabbits are a large source of this supply, such skins 
bring only two or three cents apiece, which would not, 
of course, be profitable for small domestic producers. 

The hope of the fur industry is in the finer varieties 
produced by scientific selective breeding. Some rabbits 
have fine fur, but thin skin ; others have thick skin, but 
poor fur ; others have both good fur and thick skin, but 
with the fur poorly set. The selective breeder aims to 
produce a rabbit with a thick skin and a good fur that 
is well set. 

Wonderful progress has been made in this direction 



The Rabbit m the Garden 'Economy 139 

especially in the United States, though France and 
Japan have developed certain kinds of fur-bearing rab- 
bits for which there is a large and steady demand at 
fairly remunerative prices. 

In some parts of the United States rabbit meat can 
be produced all the way from six to fifteen cents per 
pound, and sold at twenty to forty cents a pound at 
different seasons. While this does not return much 
profit to the producer, unless he is operating on a very 
large scale, it does enable him to make money from 
the sale of the furs, since this is clear gain, if he can 
produce a fur which commands a good price. There 
is a kind of long-haired white rabbit producing fur that 
the layman could hardly distinguish from the white fox 
so commonly worn by young women. There is another 
that closely approximates the expensive silver fox. The 
beautiful short-haired Himalaya rabbit, when bred up 
to fur-bearing capacity, as has been done, makes a 
pretty good ermine, and when dyed passes for seal, 
though frankly called "near seal." I was once asked 
to indicate which of two cloaks was priced at $800, and 
which at $80, as they hung side by side. I picked out 
the wrong one. It was rabbit fur ! 

Some of the finest samples, representing a dozen 
varieties of fur-bearing rabbits, obtained by selective 
breeding, were submitted to large manufacturers in New 
York and Chicago, who made a thorough examination 
of their quality from every practical point of view. The 
verdict was that a great market, at prices ranging from 
fifty cents to three dollars per skin, awaited such prod- 
ucts, provided that they could be made permanently 
available upon a large scale. This is a condition which 



140 City Homes on Country Lanes 

could not be met or, at least has not, as yet. The 
development is somewhat retarded by difficulty in get- 
ting new varieties the product of many crossings to 
breed true. When this has been done, there is no doubt 
that the industry will grow to profitable proportions. 

Here we are interested, however, not so much in rab- 
bits as a potential industry of large proportions and a 
means of livelihood for great numbers of people, as in 
the place of the rabbit in the economy of the garden 
home. Even from this narrow point of view the fur 
is by no means negligible. It interests our home gar- 
dener in two ways. First, he and his family will utilize 
the fur in making their own garments. Perhaps some 
people will wear furs more extensively than they have 
formerly been able to do. It is worth while to quote the 
following from the bulletin of the U. S. Biological Sur- 
vey: 

"The better kinds of rabbit skins are used for making 
fur garments, which, when made up, are commonly sold 
as Coney, but often under other trade names. White 
skins are made up in imitation of Arctic fox, or sheared 
in imitation of ermine. Gray rabbits are dyed brown 
or black, and become Baltic black fox, or Baltic brown 
fox. Seal dyed, they become inland seal, electrical seal, 
or near seal." 

The circular adds: "These garments, while hand- 
some and comfortable, have little durability, and are, 
therefore, cheap." 

If an article of wearing apparel that you can get at 
slight cost out of your own rabbitry is "handsome and 
comfortable," it doesn't matter much if it is not so 
"durable" as the article you would buy at the store at 




TWO FAVORITE BREEDS AND THEIR HOUSING 
1. New Zealand Red. 2. Rabbit hutches used in government work. 3. Gray giant 



The Rabbit m the Garden Economy 141 

a price ranging anywhere from $100 to $1,000. In' 
fact, it would be interesting to have a democratic fur in 
which everybody might be "handsome and comfortable," 
and which may be frequently renewed without serious 
expense. This is the first point of interest to the home 
gardener not only that the rabbit increases and en- 
riches the food supply, but also helps out the wardrobe 
of his wife and daughters. 

Another distinct development that has occurred, and 
may occur very often in the future, is that this pretty 
rabbit fur supplies the basis for a "cottage industry," 
in which many women of taste may engage in a small 
way, upon a scale proportioned to their enterprise and 
industry. Mrs. J. M. Sherman, of Los Angeles, has 
pursued this plan successfully. She has taken even the 
common varieties of rabbits, some having very beauti- 
ful skins, and has made them into sets of furs that have 
proved to be in lively demand and at good prices. She 
has found it to be a most interesting and profitable 
thing to do. There is no reason why others can not do 
the same thing. They will find a market at their door 
for all they can produce, if their experience is like that 
of others who have already adopted the plan. 

Thus we have chicken and rabbit meat for our luxuri- 
ous table, but that is not all. We have not yet called 
the roll of the small livestock that goes with the home- 
in-a-garden. 



CHAPTER XIII 

BROILED SQUAB, AND THAT SORT OF THING 

THE squab, of course, is frankly a luxury, rather 
than an article of staple diet. Some people 
never get it at all, except, perhaps, when con- 
valescing from some serious illness and ordered by their 
physician bo partake of the most delicate of meats for 
a brief season. The comparatively few who do include 
broiled squab in their bill-of-fare do so but rarely, and 
then perhaps with a guilty sense of self-indulgence. 
Really, there are but two kinds of people who can 
afford this luxury millionaires, and those who rejoice 
in a home garden. Millionaires can do it because they 
have the price ; home gardeners, because they have the 
squabs. 

As a matter of fact, broiled squab ought to be as 
common as are canned vegetables and fruit in the aver- 
age household. It belongs to the luxurious table that 
awaits millions of our best families in the "Invisible City 
of Homes" surrounding every urban center in the land. 
These best families are the essence of American society. 
They do the day's work in every department ; pay most 
of the taxes ; bear the heat and burden of the day in war 
and in peace. And nothing is too good for them not 
even broiled squab. Bless their hearts ! they are going 
to have it, and everything else that goes with a thor- 

142 



Broiled Squab, and That Sort of Thing 143 

oughly well-provided life, socially and economically, 
intellectually and spiritually. 

I put the emphasis on the squab, because it so pal- 
pably represents the good things that the few now 
have and that the many ought to have, and may readily 
have when they shall have learned to make the most of 
their environment. 

Coming to the practical side, we find that the minia- 
ture pigeon-loft, sufficient for the needs of the average 
household, goes admirably with the garden home. It 
is another of the industries that is now handled inten- 
sively, as we have seen in the case of chickens and rab- 
bits. Pigeons are easily cared for and less liable to 
disease than some other kinds of fowl, because of their 
good habit of taking frequent baths. It seems like a 
miracle, but in from four to six weeks the fat little 
squab, weighing about a pound, is ready for the table. 
It is perfectly feasible to have squabs once or twice a 
week, instead of perhaps once or twice a year, as is the 
case of most people who have to buy them in the market 
or restaurant. They may be cooked, of course, in sev- 
eral different ways, and are often stuffed and baked. 
Served in this manner, with plenty of fresh vegetables 
and fruit from the garden, they do very nicely as the 
piece de resistance for even ceremonial dinners, when 
visitors are entertained, and the family wishes to make 
the best impression. 

There are many kinds of pigeons, including the well- 
known Homer. The Red Carneaux are perhaps the 
favorite in the market. The biggest member of the 
family, curiously enough, is called the "runt." This 
produces a 2-pound squab, very fine for home use, but 



144 City Homes on Country Lanes 

not so profitable for selling. The most successful pigeon 
pen in California contains fifteen pair. This is 6 ft. 
wide, 6 ft. high, 5 ft. deep, and is inclosed in a flying 
pen 8 ft. long and 6 ft. wide. The flock increases, on 
an average at the rate of 12 birds a year for each pair 
of old birds, and the young ones begin to breed in about 
five months. The old stock is kept for breeding, and 
the young birds consumed or sold. 

The best pigeon story I know is that of Clarence Ray 
King, of Hayward, California. Since he began purely 
as a home gardener, raising a few pigeons in his yard, 
while engaged at his trade as an electrician, and after- 
wards became a thorough master of the pigeon business, 
and finally decided to give it his whole attention, it 
seems well worth while to relate his experience. We 
are now speaking of pigeons in terms of the luxurious 
family table, and yet it is possible that many a man 
who builds his first pen with nothing but that in view, 
may discover that he "builded better than he knew" in 
the way of a livelihood, as was the case with Mr. King. 

In 1905, when 23 years of age, Mr. King was em- 
ployed as an electrician in Los Angeles. One day he 
was sent into the suburbs to repair a meter, and dis- 
covered a good-sized pigeon-loft filled with Homers. 
As a boy, he had had a few of the common pigeons, and 
the sight of this loft revived his interest in the subject. 
He decided to begin again, in a small way, in his father's 
yard. After a while, he had 500 birds in a lot 50x150 
ft., and these were so profitable that he decided to in- 
crease his operations, which he did, by getting the use 
of an adjoining lot. When his flock increased to 2,000 
he found it was paying him a regular income of $150 



Broiled Squab, and That Sort of Thing 145 

per month. He then decided that the time had come for 
him to cease working for the electric company and de- 
vote himself exclusively to the fortunes of Clarence Ray 
King. He also decided to move the scene of his opera- 
tions and interest some capital. His brother joined 
him, making an investment of $8,000, and with this 
they established themselves at Hay ward, 15 miles from 
San Francisco, which is a particularly good market 
for squabs. 

They purchased six acres of land for $6,500. Mr. 
King pursued his labors as breeder and expert, soon 
winning a high position in the craft, and becoming 
president of the California Pigeon Club ; his brother at- 
tended to the marketing. While they own six acres, 
most of it is devoted to trees, and only about one and 
one-half acres to the squab industry. Their "pigeon- 
loft" as it is called in deference to custom, is not a loft 
at all, but a low structure consisting of a collection of 
pens built after the manner already described. It oc- 
cupies a trifle more than one acre, and houses 14,000 
birds. Its output averages 600 squabs every five days, 
and its net earnings are something like $1,000 per 
month, the greater portion of which is derived from 
market squabs, though breeding stock also is sold, 
not only to customers throughout the United States, 
but often to foreign countries. 

The facts in regard to Mr. King's experience are 
thoroughly authenticated, and might naturally inspire 
many people to follow his example. Those so inclined 
should follow all of it, not part of it. They are again 
reminded that Mr. King started in a very small way, in- 
tending to raise pigeons for home use, and as an agree- 



146 City Homes on Country Lanes 

able hobby. He thought if it increased his income it 
would be all right, but he had no expectation of aban- 
doning his good trade and salary as a skilled electrician. 
After a few years he became expert, and discovered that 
there was a good market for squabs at popular prices. 
Steamship lines and railroad dining-cars consume a 
great many dozens daily. They are also in demand for 
formal banquets 6,000 of them having been used in one 
single occasion in Los Angeles ; and first-class hotels and 
restaurants serve them regularly. When Mr. King had 
mastered all details of the subject, he was ready to drop 
his hold upon the payroll and stake his future upon an 
independent business. 

By the way, he does not think California the best 
place to raise pigeons. He says New York is the great- 
est market in the world ; and that the Southern States, 
all the way from Virginia to Florida, where the climate 
is mild, and where the markets of the Eastern seaboard 
may be reached in a few hours' time, offer the finest 
field. 

But the squab is not the only unusual item that will 
come upon the luxurious table of the many in the future. 
There are ducks and turkeys, both readily susceptible 
of intensive cultivation. It is claimed for the duck that 
it is untroubled by vermin and not subject to illness; 
quickly reaches maturity, and always finds a ready mar- 
ket. It is easy to handle. Fences 24 inches high will 
confine it safely. Ducks are not largely consumed, ex- 
cept by certain elements of our population. The reason 
more people do not eat them more often is because 
they do not get the chance. 

I am sorely tempted here to tell the story of another 






INTENSIVE CULTIVATION OF THE MARKET SQUAB 
A. Red Carneaux. B. Silver Kings. C. White Kings 



Broiled Squab, and That Sort of Thing 147 

superman of the little lands, Mr. Otto Reichardt, who 
raised white Pekin ducks at the rate of 40,000 to ten 
acres, and whose facilities and operations were all on a 
magnificent scale. Like Mr. King with his squabs, Mr. 
Reichardt's duck enterprise started as a side issue on 
a small lot, while he was employed at a trade. In 17 
years this side issue developed into the main issue, with 
a plant costing $250,000, doing an annual business of 
$350,000, and with net profits that enabled him to live 
in an aristocratic suburb, and go the gait with the best 
of 'em. It is indeed a fascinating life story, but not 
particularly applicable to the immediate theme, except 
as showing that plenty of ducks for the enrichment of 
the luxurious table may be kept successfully on a very 
small space by modern intensive methods. 

Probably most readers will be surprised to be told 
that the lordly turkey, notorious ranger that he is, is 
also subject to intensive cultivation, and therefore 
eligible to a place on that luxurious table that is the 
rightful heritage of the home gardener. Mr. and Mrs. 
W. W. Hevener, of San Ysidro, California, raised a 
goodly bunch of turkeys year after year, as one of the 
interesting incidents of their acre home. The little 
turks were raised in a coop 10x12 ft. and, when grown, 
made their home in a eucalyptus grove, where they could 
roost in the trees. At all times they were confined 
to a small space, which did not, however, interfere 
with their growth, as they ranged in weight from 8 to 
20 pounds. Mr. Hevener has turned off as many as 
thirty at the holiday season, and found them very 
profitable sellers, as well as exceedingly good to eat. 

Even the family pig can be raised in the garden-home 



148 City Homes on Country Lanes 

plot in a perfectly sanitary way, and the family thereby 
supplied with pork and bacon. This proposition has 
been worked out successfully by the United States De- 
partment of Agriculture, as we shall learn, when we pass 
from philosophy to programme ; from the consideration 
of the home-in-a-garden as a way of life, to the con- 
sideration of its mechanical aspects; or, as the reader 
may perhaps say, when we descend from the blue sky 
to the solid earth. 

In the meantime, we are not yet through with our 
luxurious table. There are two staples yet unaccounted 
for milk and sugar. 



CHAPTER XIV 



"Thou shalt have goat's milk enough for thy food, for the food 
of thy household, and for the maintenance of thy maidens." 

Proverbs. 

MILK, butter and cheese are as essential to the 
economy of the garden home as fruit, vege- 
tables, eggs and meat. Our scheme of produc- 
tion for the family that has set its heart upon the larg- 
est measure of independence and self-sufficiency would 
be woefully incomplete if it could not solve the problem 
of supplying itself with those necessaries. Of course, 
there is the good old family cow, which will doubtless be 
in evidence in the garden city of the future; for it is 
possible to keep the cow in an intensive way, and to 
work out a cooperative plan of pasturing. Indeed, the 
man who first aroused my interest in the possibilities of 
little-landing kept a most adorable cow on his third of 
an acre, and that cow was the largest source of his cash 
income, even though she rarely stepped outside of her 
diminutive barnyard. 

The modern milch goat is the thing for the garden 
home, since five to eight goats may be kept at the cost 
of keeping one cow ; and since two good goats will main- 
tain the family milk supply throughout the year. 

To speak up for the milch goat is, of course, to put 
one's self immediately on the defensive. The average 

149 



150 City Homes on Country Lanes 

reader will think of the Harlem goat and all it implies 
of Shantytown, and the diet of tin-cans and bill- 
boards. Undoubtedly the goat is popularly regarded 
as a social outcast at least in America. The best 
thing that has been said of it in the past is to call it 
"the Poor Man's Cow." But in recent years the English 
nobility have taken to goats and formed a society to 
promote its interests, under a motto revised to read 
"the Wise Man's Cow." The truth is that the goat, 
when understood and well-cared for, is one of the most 
interesting and useful of domestic animals, and has been 
so regarded in many countries from the dawn of history. 
The Bible is full of allusions to goats, their milk and 
meat. And in that and much other ancient literature 
they are always referred to in terms of respect. 

In this country it has happened that only the common 
"Nanny" has been much in evidence. She has usually 
been the makeshift of the poor, with no influential 
friends to proclaim her virtues, though in recent years 
it has been somewhat different. The public has begun 
to discover that there are goats and goats, including 
such aristocratic individuals as the Swiss Toggenburg, 
the Saanen, and the Anglo-Nubian, with its distin- 
guished Roman nose. Enthusiastic breeders and pro- 
moters have sprung up, with their literature, their 
periodicals and their societies, in consequence of which 
the worthy milch goat is forging rapidly ahead in re- 
spectability. In California, at least, the goat has found 
its friends among the most refined and cultivated mem- 
bers of society. The most prominent among these is 
a young lady belonging to a well-known family, who 
resigned her position as teacher of Greek and arch- 




POPULAR BKEEDS OF SWISS 



The Toggenburg Kids (upper picture) look more like fawn than like common goats. The 
Saanen does (bottom) assure the milk supply. 



"And Thou Shalt Have Goafs Milk" 151 

aeclogy in one of the universities in order to devote her 
time and attention exclusively to goat-raising. 

A good goat gives daily from two to four quarts of 
milk of superior quality. It is entirely free from the 
germs of tuberculosis, wonderfully nourishing and 
wholesome, and many who can not digest cow's milk 
have no difficulty whatever with goat's milk. This fact 
is coming to be generally recognized by physicians, with 
the result that goat's milk is in great demand for babies 
and invalids. It also sells in the markets for from two 
to three times the price of cow's milk. This is doubtless 
partially due to its scarcity ; but also to its superior 
quality for certain purposes. One sanitarium offered a 
dollar a quart for a goodly supply, and from forty to 
fifty cents a quart is not an uncommon price for it to 
bring in large cities. The only valid objection to goat's 
milk of which I have knowledge is that it spoils one's 
taste for cow's milk, which makes it inconvenient if one 
is so situated as to be unable to get goat's milk. 

The first virtue of the goat, from the standpoint of 
the home-in-a-garden family, is that it can be stabled 
in a very small space. And the stable is so cunning 
almost like a doll's house! When I visit Luther Bur-. 
bank, I make a bee-line for his goat stable. He favors 
the white Saanen; and his goats stand on their hind 
legs with their fore feet on the top rail of the fence and 
welcome the visitor by rubbing their noses against his 
coat-sleeve. It should be said that the goat is a family 
pet. People come to love them dearly, and their kids 
usually twins, but sometimes triplets are the cutest 
little playfellows in the world. It is an endless joy to 
see them frisk and cavort about their small barnyard, 



152 City Homes on Country Lanes 

or in the pasture. About 45 per cent of them are does, 
which are retained for milk purposes. Thoroughbred 
bucks are usually sold, and always for high prices, but 
the grades or the common varieties are destined to serve 
as Sunday roasts. There is no finer meat than a kid 
roast somewhere between veal and lamb, and a little 
better than either. 

Next to economy of space, the goat's claim on the 
home gardener is economy in feeding. Very careful 
experiments were made at the State University Farm in 
California, and it was found that, buying every ounce 
of feed, the cost averaged only about three cents a day. 
One goat yielded an average of three quarts of milk a 
day for 310 days; and another over three quarts a 
day for the same period. In the first case the cost of 
the feed was about one cent per quart ; and in the other 
less than a cent. This was on the basis of pre-war 
prices of feed, which were normal. 

There is no particular difference between the quality 
of the milk of the thoroughbred and that of the common 
"Nanny" when they are equally well cared for. This 
is so true that one of the greatest breeders and advo- 
cates of thoroughbred stock has written : 

"Despite my association with the Toggenburg breed, 
my sentiments can be most truthfully summed up by 
borrowing the words of the popular song: 

*Any little goat that's a nice little goat 
Is the right little goat for me.'" 

There is, however, an important advantage in the 
thoroughbred in the matter of quantity, not only of the 
average daily yield, but also in the period of lactation. 



"And Thou Shalt Have Goat's Milk' 9 153 

In the thoroughbred this period is from nine to ten 
months, against three or four months with the common 
native goat. Hence it is most desirable that the home 
gardener should have a thoroughbred goat, though not 
necessarily a 100 per cent thoroughbred. 

The most serious difficulty in meeting this demand is 
that blooded goats are scarce and dear in the United 
States. There are probably not more than 3,000 pure- 
bred milch goats in this country to-day. Parenthetic- 
ally, it should be said that the Angora is not properly 
classed as a milch goat, but is kept for its beautiful 
fleece. Of the Swiss goats the Toggenburg is the most 
numerous, and the Saanen comes next. The Anglo- 
Nubian is gaining ground, and its friends are most 
enthusiastic partly because of the patrician Roman 
nose, but more because of their confident claim in regard 
to the "odorless" buck. 

It should be said that all of the imported goats are 
quite different in appearance from the native variety. 
Usually they are hornless and gifted with graceful lines, 
so that they more resemble young deer or fawns than 
the common backyard goat. This is particularly true 
of the Toggenburg, because of their fawn color. The 
Saanens are pure white, and the Anglo-Nubian black, 
or reddish black. It is conceded that the Toggenburg 
gives the most milk, the Anglo-Nubian the richest, while 
the Saanen represents the middle ground between the 
two in both qualities. Doubtless everybody knows that 
the finest cheese in the world is made of goat's milk, and 
appreciates the fact that home-made cheese is a de- 
lightful and nutritious feature of the household diet. 

The price of pure-bred goats, ranging from $75 to 



154 City Homes on Country Lanes 

$200, is prohibitive for many, even if the goats are 
available in sufficient numbers to meet the very great de- 
mand that may be anticipated in the next few years. 
In this dilemma the question is, What can be done to 
safeguard the self-sufficient garden home in the matter 
of milk, butter and cheese? This is a question to which 
Miss Irmagarde Richards, one of the most successful 
breeders of Toggenburg goats, and a high authority 
on the subject, has given much thought and study. She 
says: "Don't buy a goat, but 'make' one." And con- 
tinues : 

"Go out into the highways and byways and you will 
find, wherever there is a district settled by foreigners, 
a fair sprinkling of goats staked on small spaces of 
green, open ground. Find a fresh goat that you like 
and buy her. She will probably have horns. She may, 
or may not, be a good milker; but, at any rate, use your 
best judgment. If possible, get a doe with a buck kid, 
and include the kid in the purchase. If you have to 
learn to milk, and are not much of a success at first, 
the kid will finish the job for you and so prevent your 
ignorance from spoiling the doe. At any rate, the doe 
would the more quickly adjust herself to the new home, 
if her kid is with her. As soon as the new duties and 
relationships are established, the kid can fulfill his 
destiny as a Sunday roast." 

The next point in her advice is particularly prac- 
ticable for the people of a garden city where large 
numbers are thinking of a little goat dairy. She urges 
that 50 to 100 families who have bought these common 
does shall combine in the purchase of a high-priced, 
thoroughbred buck, and proceed to produce half-breeds, 



"And Thou Shalt Have Goat's Milk" 155 

of which about one-half will probably be does. These 
half-breed does should be bred to the thoroughbred 
buck, and the next generation will be three-fourths pure, 
which Miss Richards assures us is pure enough for all 
practical purposes. In fact, she says that very often 
it will be hardly possible to distinguish between the 
three-fourths grade in appearance or other qualities. 

In this way an entire community could be supplied 
with splendid milch goats, and thus solve one of the 
most important problems of the garden home. The 
drawback about this plan is that it would require about 
three years to bring it to fruition, and during that 
period most people would have to depend on the milk- 
man. Of this aspect of the matter, Miss Richards 
says: 

"A long time to wait for results, do you think? Not 
so long as you wait for your orchard to come into 
profitable bearing, and you have some by-products as 
you go enough milk to balance the books, at least ; 
a lot of fertilizer of exceptional value; several roasts 
of the most delicious meat ; a soft fur rug or two ; and, 
finally, the sale of the scrub doe herself, when her grade 
daughter is ready to take her place not to speak of 
the fun!" 

Apparently there is no other way to meet the de- 
mand, except, perhaps, by importation, and that has 
been hampered by law in recent years ; besides, that 
would involve an expense beyond the reach of the many 
who will be engaged in building and stocking their gar- 
den homes. After all, three years is not long to wait 
for a dependable and permanent supply of milk at a 
cost of one to two cents per quart; and milk, too, so 



156 City Homes on Coimtry Lanes 

superior to the ordinary kind that it sells for two or 
three times as much as cow's milk in the market. 

In summing up the advantages of goat culture, Miss 
Richards states one point that will sink deep into many 
hearts, when she says: 

"Still more may one offer as a by-product of this 
venture that wonderful experience (what goat-keeper 
has not had an opportunity to share in it?) of watch- 
ing some little despaired-of baby, whose tiny, claw-like 
hand has almost relaxed its hold on life, come back 
from the valley of the shadow ; of seeing it return to 
eat and sleep normally, to grow round and rosy, and 
to step out into childhood a joyous, husky youngster. 
To those of us who have stood by and watched that 
miracle there are no words tender and reverent enough 
to express our feeling for the Little Friend of All the 
World." 



CHAPTER XV 

THE HONEYBEE AND THE SUGAR-BOWL 

"Eat thou honey because it is good." 

Solomon. 

OF all the intensive folk, born for the comfort 
of the garden home, surely the honeybee ranks 
first. While associated in most minds with the 
home in the country, it is by no means of purely rural 
inclinations. It can flourish in the suburbs; not only 
that, but in a limited way it has begun to follow the 
crowd to the congested urban centers. San Francisco, 
piled up on the tip of a sandy peninsula, harbors hun- 
dreds of colonies of bees, most of them in backyards, 
but some of them on fire-escapes of apartment houses, 
and some on roofs of skyscrapers. The same is true 
of New York and other cities. Sometimes hives are 
installed in offices, the waiting-rooms of physicians, 
particularly; and dentists say that they sooth the 
irritated nerves of their patients partly by their mur- 
murous humming, and partly because the interesting 
insects induce forgetfulness of self. There are beau- 
tiful city homes where bees are kept in the rooms in 
glass hives, with an aperture at the rear permitting 
ingress and egress. The bees are no more trouble than 
goldfish, and require less care than a canary. 

At first thought, one would imagine that bees could 

157 



158 City Homes on Country Lanes 

find no pasture in a crowded city. Many mistakenly 
think the city bee subsists on garbage barrels or other 
unsanitary sources of supply. The truth is that they 
find flowers and other clean things to feed upon; and 
it is a well-known fact, of course, that they often 
travel a long distance for their food. These are ex- 
treme instances of the intensive cultivation of the honey- 
bee, which only emphasize its practical utility in the 
economy of the garden home. 

Sugar, of course, as much as milk, and far more 
than meat, is an essential in every household. The 
fluctuating, and often soaring, price bf sugar is one 
of the acute points in high cost of living. The home 
in the garden should be as free from the exactions of 
the sugar trust as possible. And if honey does not 
satisfy every palate, or meet every household need, 
it can be made to go a very long way in that direction. 
It is most unusual to hear any one complain of getting 
too much honey; and quite common to hear people 
say that they have never had enough. There is no 
reason in the world why the home gardener should not 
be as independent in this respect as in the matter of 
meat, eggs, vegetables and fruit. 

As in the case of poultry, eggs and rabbits, the bee 
industry has its organizations, local and national, its 
periodicals and literature. It even has its poets and 
romanticists, as every one knows who has read Maurice 
Maeterlinck's charming book, "The Life of the Bee." 
Like all other departments in our new art of little- 
landing, the honeybee has evolved its specialists and 
enthusiasts, who find their highest satisfaction in this 
line of work and enjoy wide reputation as authorities. 



The Honeybee and the Sugar-Bowl 159 

Bee-keeping is an important industry, and the prin- 
cipal source of livelihood for thousands of people. 
During the past few years it has been extremely profit- 
able on account of the unusual demand for sweets, 
and of the high price of sugar. Bee-keeping, as a pro- 
fession is not, however, for our home gardener, who 
wants honey only for the enrichment of his table ; wants 
it whether times are good or bad; and wants it fresh 
from his own little apiary. Things that are good 
even when bought from the corner store are somehow 
infinitely better when produced at home. 

The cost of establishing a small garden apiary, in- 
cluding the purchase of bees, and equipment and sup- 
plies, is usually about $50. A good hive should supply 
from fifty to two hundred combs a year, and readily 
pay for itself the first year. The cost of filling the 
family "sugar-bowl" in this way is about two cents 
per pound counting nothing, of course, for one's own 
time and labor, which is merely incidental to the con- 
duct of the home garden. The market price fluctuates, 
but is rarely lower than 20 cents a pound ; and usually 
higher when the product is put up in attractive car- 
tons. From twenty-five to fifty hives may be kept in 
a good-sized garden lot. A small family with such an 
apiary would doubtless have surplus product to sell 
to the neighbors. There are many instances where 
a cash income of from $400 to $500 is realized in this 
way; and in any garden city there are certain to be 
a number of enthusiasts loving bee culture and spe- 
cializing in it, with a view of increasing their income. 
Such people will generally have their private customers 
in town and so obtain the full retail price. 



160 City Homes on Country Lanet 

In San Francisco some years ago there was a Boys' 
Bee Club, organized and directed by Ralph R. Bent, an 
enthusiastic young bee man, who attracted a following 
of all sorts and conditions, ranging from 8 to 25 years 
of age. They had their apiary at Sausalito, across 
the bay from San Francisco, where they all had a 
chance to take practical lessons in bee culture. Many 
of them turned out to be shrewd salesmen ; among them 
a number of newsboys who made more money selling 
honey than they did selling papers. They canvassed 
the city for customers and found them readily on every 
hand. 

It would be practicable to have such clubs elsewhere, 
especially among the young people of the garden-city 
homes, who would thus find profitable occupation for 
their spare time, and incidentally get some good lessons 
in salesmanship. In this way the surplus product from 
a number of small garden-home apiaries could be dis- 
tributed without dealing with middlemen. 

A densely-peopled garden city is not, however, the 
place for apiaries aiming at commercial production; 
at least, beyond such a small surplus as may be inci- 
dental to home production. For one thing, it is quite 
possible to have more bees than can subsist in a given 
neighborhood; for another thing, it is possible to have 
bees so numerous and active as to make it uncomfort- 
able for the human inhabitants. Commercial apiaries 
should be located in a more open country, and in lo- 
calities particularly favorable to bee food, both in the 
matter of cultivated plants and trees and of wild 
growth. In the West, sage, manzanita and eucalyptus 
are very productive, as are also the wide fields of al- 



The Honeybee and the Sugar-Bowl 161 

falfa. In the East basswood is important, while buck- 
wheat and white clover are especially appreciated. One 
authority warns us that, where possible, bees should 
be located in low lands, so that in their search for 
sweets they may be empty when flying upward and 
have the benefit of the down-grade when they come home 
heavily laden. 

Frankly, it must be said that there are many people 
who do not like bees who feel about them very much 
as most people feel about mice and live in constant 
fear of being stung when they are about. This, in 
spite of the fact that the true bee lover permits his 
adored insects to crawl all over him; putting them in 
his hat, and sometimes even in his mouth. Such persons 
insist that when folks are stung it is their own fault 
rather than that of the bees ; that if they had the 
proper amount of confidence, and the very best man- 
ners, they would have no trouble of that sort. One 
of them naively adds : "If the matter came into court, 
they could never prove whose bee it was, anyway." 

The Bureau of Entomology, Department of Agricul- 
ture, at Washington, D. C., supplies full information 
on bee culture to all. Just here it is desired to em- 
phasize the fact that honey is exceedingly good to 
eat and can be largely made to take the place of sugar 
in the average household. The honeybee goes logically 
with the home-in-a-garden, and contributes much to 
its luxurious table. It adds to the variety of interesting 
occupations enjoyed by the household that is seeking 
contentment and happiness under its own roof, within 
the snug security of its own garden walls. 



CHAPTER XVI 

THE ELUSIVE MUSHROOM 

THE mushroom belongs undeniably to the lux- 
urious table, and is mentioned here for the sake 
of making that table complete; though it must 
be frankly said that of all the possible products of 
the garden home, the mushroom is the most elusive, and 
the least essential. It can be raised, but probably will 
not be to any great extent; though every garden city 
is likely to contain a few enthusiasts who will gayly 
squander time and money in its culture. Some of them 
will succeed, and now and then there will be a man 
who will realize a fabulous income from his mushroom 
bed considering the very small space it occupies. 

It has been my good fortune to know some of the 
most successful growers in the United States, nearly 
all of them of French origin one of them the third 
generation of famous Parisian growers of this delicacy. 
All of these men pretend to think it the simplest thing 
in the world to bring forth prolific crops in their caves 
and cellars. Often they have instructed others in the 
art, but I have never been able to learn that they cre- 
ated many competitors in consequence. 

I heard of one man who diligently read all the books, 
took all the instruction he could obtain, equipped the 
finest sort of a plant, proceeded according to all known 

162 



The Elusive Mushroom 163 

rules and did not sprout a mushroom! Finally, he 
pitched the rich but recalcitrant soil out of his cellar 
and into his barnyard, to the accompaniment of re- 
marks unfit for publication. What was his surprise 
to go out a few days later and behold his barnyard 
white with mushrooms ! "Verily," he said, "the art of 
growing mushrooms passeth all understanding." 

I recall a golden day in the San Francisco Bay region 
when, with an inquisitive friend, I toured a district 
where the mushroom is the object of quite general 
attention. We found instances of varying success. 
Just at the close of the day we came to a beautiful 
home, occupying a half-acre of ground, with three 
mushroom cellars at the rear of the lot. It was an 
inspiring sight that awaited us. The mushrooms fairly 
bubbled from the smooth, rounded beds, which covered 
the floors of the cellars, and the proud proprietor was 
in the act of making his second picking of the day. He 
admitted that he was in the enjoyment of a handsome 
income, and that he had found one of the most delight- 
ful occupations in the world. 

It looked very simple and easy. Apparently there 
was nothing about the construction of the houses that 
might not be readily duplicated. There were three 
of these houses, each 24x60 feet, and costing $600 
each. The side walls were of concrete, and there were 
two roofs, the under one of board, and the top of lath 
allowing for the passage of air between. When we' 
congratulated him on having found the primrose path 
to prosperity, he smiled grimly and said : "Yes, but for 
six long, weary years I was a failure in this business. 
I used all the money I had and all I could borrow, 



164 City Homes on Country Lanes 

and if I hadn't come through at last I should have 
been ruined. It looks easy now and it is but I sup- 
pose there are not many who would have succeeded at 
the cost of the struggle I have been through." 

After explaining all the details of the business, he 
took us to a shed that served as his laboratory, where 
he had bottles filled with mushroom cultures. He then 
opened a cupboard and displayed a most interesting 
array of little bricks. "I will tell you gentlemen where 
the secret lies. It is all in the spawn," he said. This 
coincided with what we had heard from those who had 
used various kinds of spawn, some of it widely adver- 
tised as a sure thing, and much of it disappointing in 
results. Our host informed us that he made his own 
spawn, and when we examined it we could see a striking 
difference between this and the kind usually on sale. 
It was fairly alive. It required but the slightest imagi- 
nation to feel the pulse-beat of life in these little bricks 
of smoky blue. 

We asked how he did it, and he smiled, but shook 
his head. "That is my secret," he said. "It has taken 
me a long time to perfect my methods. Out of the 
first lot of 228 bricks I made, only two were good. 
Now, I get nearly 100 per cent of live bricks." When 
we inquired if he would sell them, he returned an em- 
phatic negative, saying he could make more money by 
raising the mushrooms. 

Leon Rouge, of Los Angeles, is one of the famous 
growers of Southern California. He was educated in 
the mushroom cellars of Paris and is one of the men 
who dispelled the superstition that mushrooms can not 
be made to nourish in the dry atmosphere of Cali- 



The Elusive Mushroom 165 

fornia. For several years he conducted the work in 
the cellar of his home, supplying the best hotels and 
clubs of Los Angeles at a uniform rate of $1 a pound. 
As the locality became more thickly settled there were 
some objections on the part of the neighbors to the 
existence of a flourishing mushroom plant in the midst 
of their homes. Although Mr. Rouge had incurred 
considerable expense in the preparation of his plant 
(one of the most perfect exhibits of its kind I have 
ever seen), he cheerfully changed the location of his 
industry. Where do you suppose he went? To a long 
tunnel a deserted city water main in Elysian Park. 
Here he began his work anew, and at first in an experi- 
mental way. It turned out to be successful. He ob- 
tained a big crop of mushrooms which sold readily at 
high prices. 

There are many other interesting experiences that 
might be quoted, but they all come to the same thing. 
Mushroom culture is a highly technical undertaking. 
It requires not only skill and experience but much pa- 
tience and some little capital. A good mushroom cave 
of commercial proportions costs anywhere from $500 
to $2,000. A successful grower is handsomely re- 
warded, for there is an eager, unsatisfied market for 
mushrooms almost everywhere, and the cultivated va- 
rieties usually sell at a high price. It is possible to 
raise them in a small way for home consumption with- 
out much expense, and we shall see something of 
methods advised by scientific growers, when we come 
to deal with the mechanics of the garden home ; but the 
probability is that most of our home gardeners will 
depend on the wild crop that is abundant in many parts 



166 City Homes on Country Lanes 

of the country (it is to be hoped they will be able 
to distinguish the true from the false), patronize some 
of the successful growers likely to be found in each 
garden city, or get along without this luxury, which 
may be classified among the non-essentials. 

When I mentioned the subject to Luther Burbank, 
he threw up his hands and remarked: "Please don't 
mention mushrooms to me ! In my younger days I was 
very fond of them, and ate so many that I entirely 
lost my taste for them. I will say, however, that of 
all the things in the vegetable kingdom the mushroom 
is the most finicky. I never thought it of sufficient 
importance in an economic way to justify me in wast- 
ing any time on it." 

Nevertheless, mushrooms are good when properly 
cooked, and certainly add to the luxury of the family 
table. As has already been said, they can be raised; 
but there is no apparent prospect of overproduction. 



CHAPTER XVII 

THE LUXURIOUS TABLE IN REVIEW 

HERE, then, are the materials of the luxurious 
table that is to be brought within the reach 
of the home-in-a-garden folk, and to be gen- 
erously spread for them and theirs throughout all the 
days of the future, whether prices be high or low, 
whether times be good or bad in sunshine and in storm ! 

A comfortable sufficiency of all the vegetables that 
grow in the Temperate Zone an infinite variety. 
Enough of these not only for consumption during the 
growing season, but for canning to supply the winter 
needs of the household. 

A comfortable sufficiency of all the berries and small 
fruits that grow in the Temperate Zone the products 
of garden bed and shrub and vine ; and enough for jams, 
jellies and preserves throughout the year. 

A comfortable sufficiency of all the tree fruits that 
grow in the Temperate Zone, with a surplus for pre- 
serves. 

A comfortable sufficiency of eggs fresh from the nest. 
I repeat it fresh! 

A comfortable sufficiency of the very nicest milk; 
with delicious home-made butter, and a variety of de- 
lectable cheeses. 

A comfortable sufficiency of chicken age authen- 
ticated (not cold-storage). 

167 



168 City Homes on Country Lanes 

A comfortable sufficiency of young, fat squabs and 
other fowl ducks, geese, turkeys assuredly even 
pheasants, if you've a taste for one of the more delicate 
tasks of poultry raising. The guinea hen is a triumph 
on the table, but something of a bolshevist in the garden 
(her shrill, monotonous piping). 

A comfortable sufficiency of rabbit meat, in all re- 
spects equal in some respects superior to chicken, 
with a by-product of fur which, if it does not belong 
to the luxurious table, is an added luxury for the family. 

In addition to all this the occasional kid roast ; even 
pork, if you have a pig, the sanitary pen, and the 
gumption ! 

All these elements of a generous living are within 
the reach of the home-in-a-garden folk not only within 
their reach, but subject to their secure control, regard- 
less of railroad rates, middlemen's charges, strikes, 
lockouts, and fluctuations in the purchasing power of 
the dollar. They are available, too, at cost, which 
means, as we have seen, a cent a quart for a superior 
quality of milk; two cents a pound for the kind of 
sugar that comes direct from the flowers; vegetables 
and fruit at the cost of seeds, nursery stock and fer- 
tilizer; meat at the cost of such feed as must be pur- 
chased (at wholesale in the case of an organized com- 
munity) to supplement the green stuff from the garden. 
All this because the garden people have resumed their 
heritage in the soil, the sunshine and the rain God's 
beneficent provision for the physical sustenance of His 
children on this good earth. I reckon neither the land 
nor the labor into the cost. The land is part of the 
garden home, costing no more, and possibly less than 
that paid for a "canned" home in city apartments 



The Luxurious Table in Review 169 

that sort of a home that appropriately accompanies 
a diet of canned vegetables, fruit, milk and meat. The 
labor is the loving, enthusiastic and interesting labor 
of the whole family in spare hours, with its grateful 
expression of individual initiative, and its valuable les- 
sons in efficiency and self-reliance. These things rep- 
resent long steps toward genuine freedom. 

Stress is laid on a "comfortable sufficiency." It is 
of the essence of the new way of life. I am not talk- 
ing of your old-fashioned farm, any more than I am 
talking of your cell in the apartment house. I am 
talking of the home-in-a-garden brought to its best 
efficiency and highest refinement. I am talking of a 
new type of man, a new element of our citizenship. 
We need a new term to describe him this "country- 
minded" man loving the city and attached to its pay- 
roll, yet yearning for the rural savor in his daily life, 
and the opportunity of individual expression in health- 
ful labor as much as "David Grayson" ; as much as the 
New York business man we read of in earlier pages. 
What shall we call him? 

The Homelander! 

The man with a little home of his own on the land, 
where he may work lovingly for himself without a wage, 
yet for a higher compensation than he gets in town; 
and where, in the course of the patient years, he may 
rear a holy temple for his wife and babies, from which 
no landlord may turn him out. 

That is the Homelander ! 

Every feature of his life has been demonstrated, and 
is now in successful operation. True, not all of it 
has been demonstrated in one garden city exclusively 
dedicated to the cause; still less in a thousand garden 



170 City Homes on Country Lanes 

cities throughout the land, with millions of garden 
homes. That is something that waits upon the future. 
But every separate wheel and cog that is to enter into 
the complete mechanism of the garden city has been 
tested and found to be good. And there are com- 
munities now in a state of thriving existence where the 
whole plan is approximated. 

I am thinking of it now as a great department of 
our national life, under national leadership, as we shall 
presently see on reaching the constructive programme. 
I do not conceive it, except incidentally, in terms of 
our vexed "housing problem." Housing! A cold, re- 
pellent word. No, no ! Not "housing," but making 
our earth to blossom with homes of men ! And a home 
is much more than a house. 

There will, of course, be unbelievers. There have 
been in every age. They oppose each step of human 
progress. They were born with the word "impossible" 
on their lips. And their forgotten dust paves the high- 
ways of history whereon the race has marched to better 
things. 

They will call it a "dream" this hope of a better, 
fuller, freer life for the mass of our country-minded. 
We answer: "But dreams come true!" They will char- 
acterize it by the moss-covered term "Visionary!" 
We quote the Good Book: "Where there is no vision, 
the people perish." They are perishing now of apart- 
ment houses, high cost of living, monotonous industrial 
ruts, stifled individualism, an overdose of the movies. 
They are lost in the jungle of our complex modern life. 

The Home-In- A-Garden is the WAY OUT. 



CHAPTER XVIII 

SOCIAL LIFE OF THE GARDEN CITY 

"A small house, 
A large garden, 
A few dear friends, 
And many books." 

THE ideal condition for an interesting and whole- 
some society, it seems to me, is a community 
where there are enough neighbors, but not too 
many; where neighbors are near enough, but not too 
near ; where an approximate equality of fortune exists, 
so that there are no wide gulfs to be bridged; where 
the people, though diversified in race, religion and com- 
mercial pursuits, are, nevertheless, united by a common 
interest and enthusiasm, lending a certain fervor to 
their lives. If these are sound principles, then the 
garden city offers ideal soil for their planting and culti- 
vation, and invites us to the consideration of forms of 
social life which hold out the most charming possi- 
bilities. 

As to this, there is really no question, for if any 
side of the garden-city experience has been thoroughly 
tried out and demonstrated it is the social side. It 
offers a striking contrast to lonely country life on the 
one hand, and crowded city life on the other, striking 
a happy medium in which the advantages of both are 
nicely blended and their drawbacks largely avoided. 

171 



City Homes on Country Lanes 

The drawback about average rural conditions in 
respect to organized social life is the lack of necessary 
facilities, and the difficulty of assembling the people 
without great inconvenience. The city, of course, has 
all the facilities for the most diversified social and in- 
tellectual experience within easy reach of its popula- 
tion, but in this case there are other conditions that 
make it difficult to obtain the best atmosphere and real- 
ize the best results. It is an axiom that in the city 
you scarcely know your next-door neighbor. Naturally, 
you have your own circle of acquaintances, your own 
social, religious, and intellectual affiliations, and so 
enjoy the benefits of society to some extent; but com- 
paratively few people own their own homes, while the 
population is constantly shifting. They are more or 
less like the tumble-weed which, because its roots fail 
to strike into the ground, goes rolling about the country 
before every stiff breeze. So the shifting winds of 
employment and unemployment, of prosperity and de- 
pression, have their effect upon neighborhoods com- 
posed almost wholly of those living in rented houses 
or apartments. These conditions do not favor a high 
development of social relationships, and the consequence 
is that beyond a small circle of intimates very many 
of us have no social diversions except church and the 
movies. 

The population of the garden city, on the other 
hand, will be composed 100 per cent of home-owners. 
There will be comparatively little shifting of population 
as the years go by. The home-in-a-garden folk are not 
like the tumble-weed; they are more like the oak that 
sends its roots deep, taking firm hold upon the soil, in 



Social Life of the Garden City 173 

order that its sheltering branches may reach high and 
wide. Furthermore, in a garden city of the right size, 
people would be generally acquainted, and drawn to- 
gether on many occasions by a common interest. These 
fundamental conditions are most favorable to the grad- 
ual evolution of an interesting society. 

I think in time quite half of the population of urban 
centers will be dispersed in garden homes surrounding 
the city, within thirty to sixty-minutes' ride of their 
places of employment, and of the theaters, art gal- 
leries, department stores, and other great attractions 
which they will frequently patronize. This would mean 
that tens of thousands, and in many cases, hundreds 
of thousands of families would be so situated. We do 
not, however, wish to create another great city on the 
exterior of one now in existence, since that would nullify 
the social principles we are trying to establish. There 
should be a series of communities, often closely con- 
tiguous, but each with its separate social life, and the 
facilities that would be required for its service. A 
community of 500 families, representing a total popu- 
lation of from 1,500 to 2,000, would be about right to 
secure the best results in a social way. In such a com- 
munity, in addition to their own personal friends and 
acquaintances, the people would enjoy the benefits of 
a highly-organized social life, such as is by no means 
now enjoyed by the vast majority of our people, either 
in town or country. 

The throbbing heart of the organized social life in 
a garden city is its civic center, with its manifold 
activities. It is possible to make this institution a 
great socal shrine the common hearthstone of the 



174 City Homes on Country Lanes 

community. It is desirable, though not strictly neces- 
sary, that it should be very attractive in a material 
way, and very complete in all its facilities. I have 
had something to do with such institutions over a lonjjj 
period of years; and, testifying from experience, can 
bear witness to the fact that it is possible to achieve 
the finest spiritual results in the humblest environment. 
Never have I seen the spiritual flame of the community 
rise higher than in a little civic center which consisted 
of a shanty and a tent, and which became, in fact, the 
starting point of a new social history; but that was a 
matter of necessity rather than of choice. It is desir- 
able that this great spirit should be comfortably, even 
handsomely, housed, and this will be readily possible 
in communities thoughtfully planned in advance, in the 
light of experience. 

There is need, first of all, of a good-sized auditorium, 
capable of seating at least one-third of the community, 
which is as large a proportion as would attend on all 
except the most important occasions. There is much 
use for smaller halls, and it is convenient and practi- 
cable to have these built at the side of the large audi- 
torium, and so arranged that they can be opened into 
it when it may be necessary to accommodate an unusual 
audience. One of the most cherished institutions in 
the garden city, as in all communities, is the public 
library and reading-room, and this should be an in- 
tegral part of the civic center. Nearly all facilities 
of the modern club should be provided, since club life, 
both for men and women, is one of the most interesting 
and satisfying features in the daily experiences of the 
cultured and well-to-do. 



Social Life of the Garden City 175 

The civic center can not successfully base its appeal 
upon any narrow range of activities. These should be 
diversified as much as possible, in order to enlist all 
of the interests and keep them alive. In one community 
of this kind I engaged an expert census enumerator 
who happened to be one of the settlers, and had him 
make a very thorough canvass to ascertain the tastes 
and talents of our people. He did the job quite scien- 
tifically, with card-indexed results. We were all amazed 
to find the amount and diversity of talent available for 
public entertainment and instruction. One man was 
an Esperanto crank, and it was not long before he 
had a number of people studying the universal lan- 
guage. One lady had made a deep study of old Colonial 
dances and costumes, and she soon had a wonderful 
class, which appealed especially to the older people. 
This revival of the stately minuet and other dignified 
dances of our forefathers was so popular that people 
frequently came many miles to witness it. It was mar- 
velous to behold the grace concealed under the roughest 
exterior, and developed under this lady's enthusiastic 
teaching. 

The census revealed one band-master, and a dozen 
or more young men who had aspired all their lives to 
blow a horn, with no opportunity to satisfy their am- 
bition. It must be confessed that the community suf- 
fered a good deal while they were learning, but they 
finally emerged a fairly competent brass band. Some 
very good actors were uncovered (there are always 
such in these communities), and a rather unusual qual- 
ity of dramatic entertainments evolved after a time. 
Of elocutionists, musicians, singers and good public 



176 City Homes on Country Lanes 

speakers there were many, for a surprisingly large 
proportion of the community were graduates of leading 
American and European universities, while fully half 
of them enjoyed something more than a common-school 
education. One of the most spiritual and eloquent 
preachers I ever listened to had been hiding his light 
under a bushel, and was induced to take the platform. 
He soon drew large audiences from the surrounding 
country, and a few months later was induced to leave 
us and accept a pulpit in a large city. 

It is, perhaps, only right to note the fact that some 
harmless cranks were revealed by the census, and that 
a good deal of tact was required to keep them from 
monopolizing the limelight. Doubtless the most pop- 
ular entertainments are the dance and the movies. Both 
require some restraint ; or, let us say, intelligent direc- 
tion. It is possible to have the best instead of the 
worst of these things, since the matter lies within con- 
trol of a small and homogeneous public, so organized 
as to be able to give effective expression to its desires. 

There is one feature of the social and intellectual 
life of a garden city that is capable of very high de- 
velopment. This is the weekly meeting devoted to 
Current Events. Many times I have said on such 
occasions : "We ought to be the most enlightened people 
on the face of the earth, with higher average knowledge 
of worth-while things transpiring throughout the 
world, than any other community." The passing of 
the years has not changed my view ; I do not think the 
statement exaggerated. To begin with, the initial ap- 
peal of the garden city, as shown by experience and 
careful analysis of its constituents, is to an element 



Social Life of the Garden City 177 

possessing a high average intelligence and education, 
even culture. The appeal is to the ambitious, the 
thoughtful to those who aspire to better conditions 
of living for themselves and their children, and are 
willing to make some sacrifice to that end; hence, the 
human material is good to start with. Next, it is pos- 
sible for the people conveniently to assemble once a 
week in a comfortable auditorium. Finally, in the 
citizenship of the nearby metropolis, and usually of 
the garden city itself, there is abundant talent to be 
drawn upon for the intelligent presentation of every 
topic within the range of current discussion political, 
literary, artistic, scientific, and religious. 

As I am writing these words, Einstein, the German 
physicist and Zionist leader, is in New York and on 
the front pages of the newspapers. I do not grasp 
his theory as to relativity, and am comforted to learn 
that there are only twelve people in the world who can 
do so; yet, if I lived in a garden city, and saw the 
announcement that some notable man or woman would 
occupy the platform to-night and tell us all the average 
brain can comprehend in regard to Einstein, including 
his passion for Zionism, and that this talk would be 
illustrated by moving pictures, I should certainly want 
to attend that meeting. At least, I should have the 
opportunity, along with all my neighbors, to get the 
best word about Einstein at the moment when he was 
conspicuously in the public mind. And, if I were in 
charge of affairs, I would undertake to get hold of 
Einstein himself and exhibit him as a passing lion. 

This is only an illustration of the opportunities 
that constantly occur to lift the standard of general 



178 City Homes on Country Lanes 

information and intelligence, in regard to big things 
that are happening all of the time. The same thing 
may be done in a big city, of course, and is done in 
extraordinary cases. But in a garden city the matter 
is reduced to a science. We make a business of it, 
deliberately setting out on a voyage of intellectual 
discovery, and making it a matter of common pride to 
keep abreast of the world's progress. We have the 
spirit and the facilities to do it, and we do it! Speak- 
ing again from experience, I can testify that it is a 
great privilege, appreciated by everybody, including 
some to whom it would not be expected to appeal. 

I have a very clear recollection of the first evening 
of this kind I ever experienced perhaps the first occa- 
sion when such a programme was carried out in such a 
community. It was inaugurated by a young woman 
of brilliant intellectual attainments, a graduate of 
Vassar, who had had the benefit of post-graduate 
courses at Columbia and at Stanford; and, though 
the affair was held in a tent, it is no exaggeration to 
say that it would not have proven disappointing if 
held at Carnegie Hall, New York. It covered every 
worth-while topic of contemporaneous interest, pre- 
senting not only the essential facts, but philosophic 
deductions that enlarged the outlook of all hearers. 
For example, Bleriot had just made the first flight 
across the English Channel, and, upon the strength of 
what now seems a trivial achievement, we soared 
through the skies of the future on the airplane a 
future now fully realized and become commonplace. 
Indeed, under that extremely intelligent leading we en- 
joyed a luminous vision of the new intellectual universe 



Social Life of the Garden City 179 

which was to be opened to the eyes of the common 
mind. We adopted almost as a watchword, the ex- 
pression : "The world is only as wide as our thought 
give us the wide horizon!" 

It may be said that many people do not care for 
opportunities of entertainment and education, but pre- 
fer to spend their time at home, or in the company of 
their particular friends; hence, that these institutions 
of community life would languish. 

That would be true, if the founders assumed that 
all people have the same tastes, and, therefore, that all 
would wish to attend the same function at the same 
time. Accommodations based on that theory would 
very often exhibit a discouraging amount of empty 
space. The most popular affair would rarely attract 
more than ten to twenty per cent of the community. 
Social tastes are widely diversified, and fortunately so. 
People form themselves into groups by natural at- 
traction and common interests. The fellows who want 
to play chess or billiards, or cards, are not long in 
finding each other out and cementing firm ties of fel- 
lowship. It is so with the literary, musical, scientific 
and religious groups. Then there are studious indi- 
viduals who haunt the library and reading-room, and a 
certain percentage of "clubable" folk who like to sit 
around the fireplace and swap yarns. These matters 
all readily adjust themselves. 

There is such a thing as the social instinct; and the 
properly organized garden city offers the fundamental 
conditions best suited to its successful cultivation. 

In writing of these hopes to Secretary Lane, with 
special reference to the civic center in a garden city 



180 City Homes on Country Lanes 

for Washington, I said: "One thing I have set my 
heart on, and that is chimes ! I want the Homelander 
to stand on his porch at twilight, and hear 'Abide With 
Me' ring out over the land and echo back from the 
hills; for I am thinking of the Spiritual Man of the 
Soil who is working in conscious partnership with God 
in going on with the creation of the earth the new 
and better earth that is to be." He replied in warm 
sympathy and approval in regard to the whole plan, 
and said with italicized emphasis: "I am for the 
chimes!" 



CHAPTER XIX 

THE PERSONAL EQUATION 

The lowliest hearthstone flame 

Is worthier of worship than the sun. 
The patter of bare brown feet that dance and run 

Over roughest cabin floor, 
And the poor mother's happy smile, are more 

Than starry hosts and lofty ghosts, 
And awful phantoms born of overwrought 

And soulless travail on the heights of thought. 

Maurice Thompson. 

THE way of life discussed in these pages will 
bring happiness and contentment, together with 
a large measure of security and individual inde- 
pendence, founded on landed proprietorship, to millions 
of families now utterly defenseless against the high 
cost of living and entirely dependent upon landlords 
for a place to lay their heads. A movement that prom- 
ises so much in the way of social upbuilding is certainly 
well worthy of national attention and encouragement. 
It does not follow that everybody will adopt this way 
of life; or that all would find it satisfactory if they 
did. It has been my consistent effort to keep clear 
the distinction between those who are city-minded and 
those who are country-minded. It would be very inter- 
esting to know how society is divided along these lines, 
but there is no way to ascertain, except by the slow 
evolution of the national life. 

181 



182 City Homes on Country Lanes 

The city-minded will continue, as they ought, to dwell 
in town. Capital and enterprise, catering always to 
popular taste, have brought wonderful improvements 
in the conditions of urban living and will doubtless 
continue to do so. The modern apartment house is a 
monument to the craze for city life. It brings within 
reach of the many conveniences that could not be bought 
with a price a generation or so ago. Municipal ad- 
vantages of every kind have been highly developed and 
are improving all the time. For the city-minded, 
capital and genius have wrought well in every depart- 
ment; and yet, from the standpoint of the country- 
minded, the sum of this fine achievement is as "dust 
and ashes," because it leaves their souls utterly un- 
satisfied. It represents only the dry husk of living. 
There is no nourishing kernel at the core of it. 

The country-minded will never be happy until they 
can set their feet on a spot of ground all their own. 
Like the birds of the air, they want a nest of their own 
designing and fashioning, in the shelter of the trees, 
under God's blue sky. They simply can not make a 
home in an apartment house, be it ever so aristocratic 
and expensive, and equipped with every convenience 
that the human brain can devise. These country- 
minded people will always be spiritual aliens in a flat. 
They will never be at peace with themselves until they 
strike their roots into their native soil. Having done 
everything for our city-minded, the time has come 
when the craving of the country-minded should be al- 
layed, if for no better reason than that of quieting 
social unrest, and thereby conserving our institutions. 
The city-minded should stay in town, and doubtless 



The Personal Equation 183 

will. No poorer service could be rendered than to urge 
them to do otherwise. They are happy in their present 
environment and would be miserable if they stepped out 
of it. 

Hence, this message is designed wholly for the coun- 
try-minded who desire to satisfy their passion for the 
soil without sacrificing any of the good things they 
are now getting in their urban experience, including 
their hold upon the payroll. 

When we shall have put a tithe of the money and 
genius into the creation of garden cities that we have 
put into apartment houses, family hotels, and separate 
houses jammed together on 25-foot lots, there will 
be a revelation of country-mindedncss that will arouse 
the nation to a sense of duty long neglected, and put 
a new star of hope in the sky of our common humanity. 
The personal equation is what tells in making success 
or failure, contentment or discontentment, in the home- 
in-a-garden, as in other walks of life. Those who have 
the right feeling and the aptitude or at least the ca- 
pacity to acquire it are the ones to enter upon the 
adventure. There is such a thing as the home-in-a- 
garden kink in the brain, just as there is such a thing 
as the mechanical kink in the brain; and, in fact, the 
two are akin, since the element of workmanship enters 
into both. Decidedly there is a technical side to little- 
landing, and boundless scope for the growth of profi- 
ciency, acquired in part by study, but more by ex- 
perience. The people who do well are those who care; 
and the people who do best of all are those who sense 
the deep spiritual significance of the thing, and so make 
it a sort of religion. In many this is a dormant sense 



184 City Homes on Country Lanes 

susceptible of being awakened and cultivated in a high 
degree, like the sense of democracy in backward 
peoples. 

The country-minded are confined to no particular 
walk in life. To illustrate, in one garden city, where 
some one took pains to get the data, it was found that 
the following occupations were represented: House- 
wives, farmers, carpenters, physicians, stenographers, 
nurserymen, builders, editors, grocers, craftsworkers, 
stationary engineers, school-teachers, dressmakers, 
clerks, expert accountants, photographers, contractors, 
real estate men, printers, clergymen, horticulturists, 
electricians, metal workers, bank clerks, mining engi- 
neers, artists, assayers, bookkeepers, jewelers, black- 
smiths, music-teachers, authors, storekeepers, car- 
builders, railroad conductors, civil service men, machin- 
ists, hotel steward, lumber dealer, truckman, newspaper 
manager, superintendent of water-works, landscape 
gardener, locomotive engineer, construction foreman, 
produce dealer, rancher, gardener, dry goods, tinner, 
cooper, wood patternmaker, laborer, restaurant man, 
worsted weaver, patent medicine. 

As the appeal of the garden home is by no means 
limited to any particular walk in life, neither is it 
limited to either sex. The garden home is preeminently 
a family rooftree, and its ideal proprietor is the man 
with wife and children, all interested and helpful. I 
venture to predict that the divorce rate will decrease 
with the growth of garden homes. Such homes are far 
more favorable to domestic felicity than apartment 
houses and family hotels. The mere fact of partner- 
ship in a mutual enterprise will have something to do 




LIVING USEFULLY AT 81 

Many a man who, in the days of his strength, has provided himself with a well-equipped 

Garden Home, will find the answer to the poet's prayer: 

"May my last days be my best." 



The Personal Equation 185 

with it; absorption in interesting work will have its 
part; but more than all else, the spiritual companion- 
ship that goes with the trees and flowers and open skies. 
Not only will there be fewer divorces ; there will be 
more marriages and more children, and for similar 
reasons. 

The occupations of the garden home are all such as 
women can readily pursue, if they have the taste for 
such things. An interesting and inspiring book might 
be written on this phase of the subject. Nothing ex- 
cept the limitation of space restrains me from relating 
many experiences of the kind which have come under 
my own observation during the past 20 years. Even 
so, I must refer to a single instance that may inspire 
others to the adventure. 

In one of the most picturesque of California valleys, 
not far from Los Angeles, two young women started 
out ten years ago to make a self-sustaining home on 
a single acre. They were accomplished artists, and 
perhaps the wild beauty of the region lured them into 
this new way of life, so strange to their experience 
and some would have thought so forbidding to per- 
sons of their delicate strength. They built a com- 
modious and beautiful tile house, largely with their own 
hands, and proceeded to organize their small holding 
on the basis of the most diversified production vege- 
tables, fruit trees, berries, poultry, rabbits, bees, and, 
finally, goats. "Pretty hard work for two girls," they 
always cautioned me to say, yet there they are after 
many years, and there their hearts will always abide. 

They demonstrated that they could make a living 
from an acre of ground within easy distance of a great 



186 City Homes on Country Lanes 

city, and enjoy a life of glorious freedom in an en- 
vironment exceedingly inspiring to their artistic tastes 
and talents. One of them, Miss Mabel Free, was the 
gardener; while the other, Miss Emma Kraft, looked 
after the live stock, finally specializing on Nubian goats 
(fell in love with their Roman noses!) and won high 
distinction as a breeder. It was a thoroughly triumph- 
ant experience. 

Such experiences pertain to all parts of the United 
States and to many different lines of work. Everybody 
knows, of course, that women are often adepts at rais- 
ing flowers, and there are numerous instances where 
they have developed into skilled florists and eajoyed a 
high degree of commercial success. Women are equally 
successful with vegetables and small fruits, and are par- 
ticularly adapted to the fine art of intensive cultivation. 

The culture of thoroughbred goats has fallen very 
largely into the hands of women perhaps because of 
their sympathy for children, for whom this kind of milk 
is often prescribed. 

The raising of chickens and squabs are favorite in- 
dustries of women, and income from this source fre- 
quently supports a family in moderate circumstances. 

Women also take kindly to rabbitcraft, and when 
they raise the fur-bearing varieties, often do well in 
manufacturing and selling fur garments. Often they 
specialize with bees. 

Among the country-minded people of big cities are 
great numbers of unmarried women who do well in 
garden homes of their own, especially where there are 
two or three of them to cooperate in the undertaking. 
Indeed, these bachelor-maids, as well as bachelors of 
the male persuasion, have always been conspicuously 



The Personal Equation 187 

numerous in garden communities. Sometimes when I 
see a childless woman hugging a fashionable poodle 
and am told that she does this in response to the ma- 
ternal instinct, I am moved to wonder whether she does 
not represent a type of women who would find far more 
satisfaction if they lavished their affection and energies 
on the interesting small livestock that goes with a gar- 
den home. Really there is a principle here worth think- 
ing of in relation to both sexes; and it is a possible 
explanation of the undoubted fact that unmarried men 
and women do naturally tend toward the little home 
on the land. Of course, they do not all remain un- 
married. Who would expect them to do so, since the 
advantage of a woman in the home and a man on the 
place, becomes quickly obvious? The agreeable social 
contact in such a community is rather discouraging to 
single blessedness ; and the really competent person of 
either sex is likely to develop into a great attraction. 
This is natural and logical, and by no means to be 
deplored. 

There is another respect in which the personal equa- 
tion should be emphasized its relation to the problem 
of old age. A few years ago an Eastern publication 
projected this question: "Where will YOU be at 65?" 
Following it with this statement : 

"Of 100 healthy men at 25 
36 will be dead at 65, 
1 will be rich, 

4 will be wealthy, 

5 will be supporting themselves by work, 

54 will be dependent upon their friends, rela- 
tives, or charity." 



188 City Homes on Cowitry Lanes 

If this be true, then more than half of us have some- 
thing very serious to think about. Nothing is more 
terrible than an unprovided old age. For many people, 
the garden home is the best possible provision, and 
when we shall have the right sort of national policy 
this provision for a decent, comfortable, and interesting 
old age will be brought within the reach of almost 
everybody. For many it will be the richest period of 
their lives. Of course, it is possible for a man to out- 
live his usefulness, even in a garden home; but the 
best place for him to be when that time comes is in a 
neighborhood of sympathetic people, and the best asset 
to possess is a well-developed garden home, where he 
may readily find companions, or a family that is will- 
ing to occupy the place (purchase it, perhaps), in 
return for the care of its feeble owner. That is better 
than dependence on "friends, relatives, or charity." 
Indeed it is not dependence in any proper sense. It 
is paying for what you get in the kind of coin that is 
worth its face. 

The care of such a place is not beyond the strength 
of healthy old age. With no rent to pay, with plenty 
of vegetables, berries, fruit, milk, eggs, and consider- 
able meat, the cost of living is small. It is quite feasible 
to have a little surplus to exchange for cash, especially 
of such things as eggs, chickens and rabbits. The 
average old man would be far happier and better off 
in every way in such a home of his own than in a public 
institution, even of the better sort. In considering the 
personal equation, the ageing person may well ask him- 
self if he knows of any better provision to make in the 




SERVING HER COUNTRY AT OVER 90 

Mrs. Thomas B. Edwards of Oberlin, Ohio, cultivated her war garden after the initial 
plowing, besides canning vegetables for herself and relatives 



The Personal Equation 189 

days of health and strength than to invest his savings 
in a garden home, and acquire all the skill he can in 
handling it. This is a question for millions of men 
and women a question by no means academic, but of 
the most practical sort. 

Another aspect of the personal equation : S. W. 
Strauss, of the National Society of Thrift, quoting 
from the records of the Surrogate Courts, made this 
statement : 

"Of 100 men who die 

3 leave estates of $10,000 or more, 
15 leave estates of from $2,000 to $10,000, 
82 out of every 100 leave no income-producing 

estate at all. 
"Of 100 widows 

6 are left in good or comfortable circum- 
stances, 

47 are obliged to go to work, 
35 are left in absolute want." 

What a reflection on the civilization of America in 
the Twentieth Century! Eighty-two men out of every 
hundred are unable to provide for their nearest and 
dearest, as the net result of their life-time labor ! Their 
wives must go out and look for a job, or hold out their 
hands for charity when the bread-winner drops by the 
wayside. 

Really, is it any wonder that among our hundred 
millions there are some who openly declare for Social 
Revolution? A great New York banker, on returning 
from a trip to Russia, remarked: "We would all be 



190 City Homes on Country Lanes 

Bolshevists if we were hungry enough." The world 
has learned, of course, that Bolshevism is a poor anti- 
dote for hunger; but who shall say that the well- 
developed garden home is not an antidote for the 54 per 
cent of old men and the 82 per cent of widows now 
left defenseless in their hour of greatest need? 

If we could do nothing else with the home-in-a-garden 
policy except to right these social tragedies the thing 
would be worth while. It happens that this, important 
as it is, is only a beneficent incident of a system that 
will heal a thousand wounds, found millions of inde- 
pendent homes, deepen and broaden the basis of our 
institutions, and literally "take Occasion by the hand 
and make the bounds of freedom wider yet." Even 
so, could there be a sweeter service to humanity than 
to raise a shield for old age and widowhood against the 
dangers that now beset them, with the vast majority 
of our people? 

Finally, a thoughtful consideration of the personal 
equation is the first thing the interested reader owes 
to himself. It can not be too often said, nor said with 
too much emphasis that the home-in-a-garden is for 
those who like that sort of thing; and especially 
for those who like it so much that they can enter upon 
it in the spirit of consecration. There is no holier 
place on earth than the home; no more sacred altar 
than the family hearthstone. Its possibilities of happi- 
ness, contentment and security are infinite. It has its 
material side, but its dominating note is spiritual. It 
is, perhaps, the deepest note we ever experience; as 
deep as man's love for the wife of his youth; as deep 
as his love for his children. To make one such home 



The Personal Equation 191 

in the course of a lifetime is an achievement to chal- 
lenge the pride and strength of any man ; to make mil- 
lions of such homes would be the proudest achievement 
of statesmanship. 



PART TWO 

THE CONSTRUCTIVE PROGRAMME 



CHAPTER I 

THE AGE OF THE ENGINEER 

THE world has come to the Age of the Engineer 
when engineering is statesmanship and states- 
manship is engineering. The demand is for 
facts, for exact information, and then for the appli- 
cation of the facts by genuinely scientific methods. 
The end sought is efficiency not merely, but something 
infinitely more important the extension of man's 
promised dominion over the earth, with an unimagined 
increase in the security, the prosperity and the happi- 
ness of mankind. 

Men can live have lived for ages by the crude, 
primitive, even wasteful use of Nature's resources ; but 
infinitely more of them can live, and live infinitely better 
than men ever lived before, when they shall have learned 
to make the most of their opportunities and environ- 
ment. This is the key to the future, which is to be 
better than the past. Only the high spirit of the 
trained engineer, dwelling in the upper air of disinter- 
ested service, is equal to the obligations of leadership 
in a day when this fundamental truth is realized. 

These are facts which the world is just beginning 
to see; but they developed very early in the course of 
the inquiry set on foot by Secretary Lane in the interest 
of rural reconstruction. It was perfectly plain that 
all the great mistakes that had attended the develop- 

195 



196 City Homes on Country Lanes 

ment of agriculture, nearly all of the disheartening 
disappointments, and a very large share of the un- 
popularity of rural life, could be traced to the absence 
of this high sense of engineering and of responsible 
public leadership that should make it available to the 
people. 

We had permitted the spirit of individualism to run 
riot in a department of the national life closely related 
to the common welfare. There is no reason why an 
acre of poor land should ever be offered to a settler. 
There is no reason why vast areas of land, unfitted for 
cultivation in their natural state, should not be made 
over into the best soil, whether it requires drainage, 
irrigation, clearing or ref ertilization ; but, to deal suc- 
cessfully with such things it is necessary to enlist a 
quality and range of information not within reach of 
the average promoter or settler, and then to utilize 
this information in a scientific way. The great need 
is a form of development thoroughly planned in ad- 
vance, and executed with precision. 

Another conclusion was arrived at: That it is not 
enough simply to investigate soils and do the large 
work of reclamation, such as the provision of irriga- 
tion and drainage, as the Government has done in the 
Western States. The land should be cleared, plowed, 
harrowed, and made ready for the planting of the 
seed even fertilized if necessary. Some of these proc- 
esses require scientific knowledge and methods; and 
all of them can be performed more economically and 
thoroughly if done on a large scale and standardized. 
After all this has been done, the settler stands only 
on the threshold of his new adventure. The engineer 



The Age of the Engineer 197 

should go with him all the way. Some one should plan 
his system of agriculture with due reference to soil and 
climate, transportation facilities and markets. He 
needs prevision in this respect; needs an architect for 
this work more than for the building of his house. 
He can live in any sort of a house, if need be, but can 
by no means succeed with any sort of a system of agri- 
culture. 

There is no reason in the world why each new settler 
should begin as though he were the first man who ever 
tried to make a home on the land; no reason why he 
should not proceed to his work in the light of all the 
experience of the past; but, to do this, he requires a 
range of information not easily within his reach, and, 
indeed, only within reach of the trained and scientific 
mind. Even when he has the correct system for his 
environment, he seldom knows how to apply it in a 
manner to obtain the best results. He must be in- 
structed by text and by example. Telling him is not 
enough he must be shown. 

Next, comes the need of organized cooperation. First 
of all in buying, then in packing, shipping, sometimes 
in manufacturing, always in selling, which often in- 
cludes the feature of publicity. It is a misnomer to 
speak of the independent home. Interdependent is the 
right word, for a prosperous community on the land 
is made up of many units, each more or less dependent 
on all the others, and requiring the element of unity 
in their affairs in order to realize anything approach- 
ing the best results. Here good engineering using the 
term in its broadest sense is highly essential. The 
lack of it is responsible for many tribulations. It is 



198 City Homes on Country Lanes 

pitiable to see millions of farmers, long established on 
the land, groping their way to forms of cooperation 
which they have found utterly necessary to their eco- 
nomic existence, and which the right sort of engineering 
might readily have provided for them at the beginning, 
long before they got into trouble. In fact, it could 
have been done far better in the beginning than at the 
later stages, when a thousand obstacles have arisen, 
and a thousand evil ways have hardened into custom. 

In a garden-city settlement, I would carry the spirit 
of engineering still further even into the kitchen and 
dining-room. If our people are to live luxuriously, it 
is not enough for them to know how to produce all the 
materials for a luxurious living; they must also know 
how to put them together. Take so simple a matter as 
a salad: Anybody with a garden can grow nearly all 
the components of a good salad; but, there are salads 
and salads; some hardly fit to eat, others that are 
food for the gods. Making a good salad is an art. 

I recall a wonderful dish I once had in a San Fran- 
cisco restaurant. I sent for the chef and asked him 
if anybody could make that kind of a salad if he had 
the ingredients and knew how. "Sure!" he said, with 
an expansive smile. "Well," I replied, "if a lot of peo- 
ple who raise these things should send for you and 
pay you a good fee, would you show them how to do 
it?" "Sure I would!" he replied. Now, the man is a 
scientific engineer in the matter of making salads. 
Isn't it absurd that a lot of nice men and women, having 
the material at hand, and lacking only the art of mak- 
ing the most of it, should go on eating commonplace 



The Age of the Engineer 199 

things, when they might have the best, if they only 
knew how? * 

The principle applies to everything produced and 
consumed in the garden home, but it will never be de- 
veloped to its full possibilities until we have the engi- 
neer in the kitchen. It is possible to map out the fam- 
ily bill-of-fare long in advance, and to order produc- 
tion accordingly. It is possible to provide luxurious 
fare, daintily served, in the homes of all our people ; but 
these things will not actually be done until the founders 
of communities enlarge their vision of responsibility and 
usefulness. 

We must have the New Engineer to make the New 
Earth. 

It is only fair to say that great progress has been 
made along these lines during the past few decades. 
The early eras of colonization, beginning with the Pil- 
grim Fathers, and coming down as late as the settle- 
ment of the Mississippi Valley, managed to get along 
with little or none of the spirit of engineering. In 
late years, both the Government and private enterprise 
have done much in the way of hydraulic and agricul- 
tural engineering, yet we are only at the gray dawn 
of things in this regard. We need a School of Social 
Engineering that should supply a far more compre- 
hensive training than is now available in any existing 
institution. We still should be dependent on special- 
ists in many lines of investigation and construction; 
but we need a type of engineer who will grasp the whole 

* Shortly after these words were written the Boston Institute 
of Technology announced a new department of Food Engineering. 



200 City Homes on Country Lanes 

problem of organizing prosperity and happiness for 
our people on the land. 

The man will come forth in response to humanity's 
great need. He will be the Architect of Institutions. 



CHAPTER II 

WHAT THE GOVERNMENT OWES ITS PEOPLE 



The future works out great men's purposes; 
The present is enough for common souls, 
Who, never looking forward, are indeed 
Mere clay, wherein the footprints of their age 
Are petrified forever . . . 

James Russell Lowell. 



IT used to be said that Uncle Sam was rich enough 
to give us all a farm. That was true while the 
fertile lands of the Mississippi Valley were still 
a part of the public domain, and while the settler had 
simply to turn the prairie sod and proceed with the 
planting of his crop. Those days are long past. Uncle 
Sam is not now rich enough to give us all a farm. And 
it would not be a good thing for most of us if he were. 
The things we work and pay for are always more valu- 
able to us than the things we get for nothing. But 
Uncle Sam does owe something to his people in the 
matter of homes both garden and farm homes. It is 
something the people do not possess; something they 
can not buy with money. 

This something is enlightened, disinterested leader- 
ship. 

With a quality of leadership in which they shall 
have perfect confidence, the people can do everything 
for themselves that needs to be done. No private 

201 



City Homes on Country Lanes 

agency can command the necessary confidence because 
in the past no private agency has ever been equal to 
the responsibility. Perhaps it is not in human nature 
that any private agency should be equal to it. There 
are drawbacks about the public service, chiefly the fact 
that it is wretchedly underpaid, but it has one great 
advantage the fact that it enables a man to rise 
above all thought of selfish personal interest, save as 
his interest may be forwarded by noble service, and to 
view the problems before him in a spirit of complete 
detachment. This spirit of detachment is essential 
to the sort of home-building that will be the real healing 
and saving of our people. I repeat, it is not a ques- 
tion of public money; it involves no raid on the public 
treasury; no taxing of some people for the benefit of 
others ; but it does involve a raid, if you please, upon 
the nation's reserves of intellect, of knowledge, and of 
heart. 

This is one of the great lessons learned in conse- 
quence of Secretary Lane's inquiry in the interest of 
national reconstruction. Necessity is still the mother 
of Invention. It was found that with a fixed debt of 
twenty-four billion, an annual budget of four or five 
billion, and a currency inflation that cut the value of 
every dollar in half, it would not be possible to obtain 
from Congress even if anybody had the courage to 
ask it anything approaching the amount of money 
that would be required to develop a home-building 
policy worthy of America. A big appropriation might 
be had in the interest of our service men. That was 
a matter that stood on different ground. But Peace 
has her dead and wounded as much as War. As a mat- 



What the Government Owes Its People 

ter of fact the veterans of peace, because of age and 
other disabilities, are often in more urgent need of 
homes and employment than that large proportion 
of War's young veterans who came unscathed from the 
battlefields, or perhaps never had the good fortune to 
come within sound of the enemy's guns. 

In searching for a key that might unlock the door 
to the land in the interest of all elements of our people, 
some eyes were turned toward Utah, which has enjoyed 
an uncommonly successful colonization experience since 
July 24, 1847, when Brigham Young and his little 
band of hunted fugitives emerged from the mouth of 
Emigration Canyon and entered upon the founding of 
a great State, whose cornerstone was the little irri- 
gated farm. Here, for three-fourths of a century, poor 
men have been coming from all parts of the earth to 
find jobs working for themselves and build self-sustain- 
ing homes, to become landed proprietors, to share in 
the cooperative ownership of the store, the factory and 
the bank. Nowhere else is ownership so widely dis- 
tributed among the people, or the common prosperity 
erected on so firm a foundation. 

The achievement can not justly be credited to cap- 
ital. There was no capital to speak of in the early 
days when the foundations of the Commonwealth were 
being laid deep in the arid soil. Labor can claim no 
peculiar credit for the achievement, because men have 
labored everywhere and always, and have no expecta- 
tion of ever doing otherwise. "Thou shalt earn thy 
bread in the sweat of thy face," is the Divine com- 
mand. Utah is a monument to leadership to a qual- 
ity of leadership that has been creative and inspiring. 



204 City Homes on Country Lanes 

This leadership has been generally attributed to the 
Mormon Church, and justly so. It is often said: "Yes, 
the Church could do it, but nobody else could do it." 
It is a shallow remark, based on the most superficial 
knowledge of Mormon institutions. Leadership is 
leadership; and, great as is the Mormon Church, it is 
a very small thing when compared to the Government 
of the United States. 

Many years ago I discussed this subject before a 
meeting of Boston ministers. One of them arose and 
asked, in a nasal voice: "Will you tell me how it hap- 
pens that after half a century of vigorous prosecution 
on the part of the Government these Mormons are 
growing faster and prospering more than ever before?" 
I replied : "That is a very easy question. Your church, 
I assume, offers the prospective convert a halo in the 
next world. Now, the Mormons offer him three square 
meals a day in this world, with a halo in the next world 
thrown in for good measure. It is a proposition that 
has appealed to a good many people especially among 
the landless, half-hungry people of Europe." 

The fact is, whether it happens to be agreeable to 
you or not, Brigham Young was an empire builder 
a captain of industry, an organizer of prosperity. His 
policies proved so satisfactory to all concerned, in- 
cluding the Treasurer of the Church, that they have 
been continued by all his successors down to the present 
hour. His emblem was an eagle with open beak and 
outstretched wings, standing on a beehive. "Fit em- 
blem," said Joseph Cook; "rapacity preying upon in- 
dustry !" Another shallow comment. Joseph Cook is 



What the Government Owes Its People 205 

nearly forgotten. Brigham Young looms larger with 
the passing of the years. Whatever his errors and 
the attempt to establish polygamy under the American 
Flag was an error, now admitted, officially reversed, 
and practically abandoned 250,000 happy and inde- 
pendent homes will plead for him in trumpet tones at 
the Throne of Grace. 

For many years I have been saying that what this 
country needs is a Mormon Church without Mor- 
mons. I mean a policy of the Federal Government that 
shall do for all our people in the future what the Mor- 
mon Church has been doing for its own people during 
the past 74 years. It has not financed its people, 
except temporarily, and in a very limited way. What 
it did was to create a system that would enable the 
humblest settler to proceed in the light of the highest 
available intelligence. This intelligence, in the early 
days, consisted of the shrewd common sense of the 
founder and the very able men by whom he was sur- 
rounded ; many, like himself, drawn from the best strain 
of New England blood. In later years, this intelligence 
took on a scientific cast through numerous schools and 
universities. 

Intelligent leadership was supplemented by a hu- 
mane and statesmanlike policy of development. No 
settler was left to shift for himself, nor allowed to 
enter upon the adventure at anything less than the 
best place that could be found. No one was permitted 
to exploit him in the price of land (for the most part 
they were able to obtain free public land), nor in the 
price of water for irrigation. In fact, Utah is one of 



206 City Homes on Country Lanes 

the few States where no one ever dreamed of trying 
to make merchandise of the melting snow and falling 
rain. Irrigation was a purely cooperative undertaking 
from the first, as much as the dikes of Holland. It was 
the first and most essential provision for the common 
welfare. Men shared the benefits and the burdens 
equitably. Out of this initial cooperation grew a whole 
fabric of cooperative industry. 

The only valid claim I know against the system is 
that it required its beneficiaries, so far as the law 
could be enforced, to pay tithings, or ten per cent of 
their gross returns, to the Church. It always seemed 
to me that this was purely a personal matter between 
the payers and the payee, and that the loyalty of the 
vast proportion of the payers might fairly be accepted 
as the complete vindication of the payee. At any rate, 
this feature is only incidental to the system ; it signifies 
nothing when we come to consider the application to the 
national life of this great and tried principle of leader- 
ship by the Government that represents us all. 

Many measures providing for reclamation and settle- 
ment were introduced in the 65th and 66th Congresses 
several of them in response to Secretary Lane's 
propaganda for Soldier Settlement. All of them 
frankly recognize the obligation of National leader- 
ship to the homeseeker; all of them go much further 
in extending national aid than any previous legisla- 
tion; all of them contemplate not merely the reclama- 
tion of the land, but the preparation of the soil, its 
subdivision into community centers and outlying farms, 
construction of roads and other facilities of the com- 



What the Government Owes Its People 207 

mon life, including community buildings, the organiza- 
tion of cooperative systems for the purchase of sup- 
plies, and the sale of products; and something in the 
way of social and civic organizations. Some of them 
provide advances of capital to assist settlers in making 
their improvements ; and under all the bills it would be 
possible for the Government to supply supervising 
architects for private as well as public buildings. 

These advanced ideas of social legislation are chiefly 
to be credited to Dr. Elwood Mead, an American engi- 
neer who learned his lessons from practical experience 
in Australia, and from European travel and observa- 
tion; and who is now doing great work for the people 
along these lines in California. He was one of the 
first of the experts summoned to Washington by Sec- 
retary Lane. 

With a single exception, all of these measures call 
for large public appropriations, ranging from $250,- 
000,000 to $500,000,000 ; but none of them propose to 
give a dollar of this money as largess or subsidy. Every 
dollar would come back to the Treasury, under a plan 
of amortized payments, bearing four per cent interest 
and running over a long series of years. 

The only constructive measure of this character that 
calls for no public appropriation whatever is known 
as the "Rural Homes Bill." It was introduced and 
championed by Utah's great Senator, Reed Smoot: 
Briefly, it makes available to land-owners, reclamation 
districts and homeseekers the expert ability and valu- 
able experience of the United States Reclamation Serv- 
ice, on condition that all such projects shall be financed 



208 City Homes on Country Lanes 

by private capital, under contracts that furnish abso- 
lute protection to the Government. The supporters 
of this bill told the whole story when they said: 

"Instead of asking Uncle Sam to carry us on his 
back, we only ask him to show us the way." 

The Rural Homes Bill brought forth several inter- 
esting debates in the Senate, in the course of which its 
sponsor encountered a steady fire of searching ques- 
tions from several of the most prominent members of 
that body. In the end, it passed the Senate without 
a dissenting vote. In the House, it went to the Com- 
mittee on the Irrigation of Arid Lands, of which Hon. 
Moses P. Kinkaid, of Nebraska, is Chairman. It could 
not have fallen into better hands, although its broad 
national purpose might have justified its reference to 
any of several other committees. After full discus- 
sion the Committee reported it favorably, even enthus- 
iastically, to the House, by unanimous action. 

It came before that body for debate on December 
21, 1920 the three-hundredth anniversary of the 
Landing of the Pilgrims and friends of the measure 
had hoped it might pass on that day. While prevailing 
by a good majority on the test vote, which came on 
the adoption of the special rule permitting its consid- 
eration, it nevertheless encountered strenuous opposi- 
tion almost entirely from the South and so went 
over as unfinished business. It was not possible to 
bring it up again before the expiration of the 66th 
Congress, owing to the crowded condition of the cal- 
endar. It was promptly reintroduced in the 67th Con- 
gress, by Senator Smoot. 

The essence of the bill is National leadership in the 
building of homes for the American people that qual- 



What the Government Owes It 9 People 209 

ity of enlightened leadership detached from every 
thought of selfish personal interest, which we have seen 
to be essential to the best results. The moral, intel- 
lectual and scientific resources at the disposal of the 
Government would be mobilized in the service of the 
humblest home. 

The law would be in no sense mandatory or restric- 
tive. It does not mean that private enterprise shall 
not be permitted to engage in various forms of land 
development in the future as in the past. It means 
merely that those who prefer to submit their project 
to the Government, first for thorough examination of 
all its aspects, then for actual construction and organi- 
zation, may have the opportunity to do so, upon con- 
dition that they shall provide every dollar of the funds 
required for the project such funds to be deposited 
with the Treasurer of the United States, and paid out 
upon the vouchers of the Secretary of the Interior. 
In return for these advantages the owners of the proj- 
ect permit the Government to fix the price of the land, 
thus agreeing to accept a reasonable limitation upon 
the profits of the enterprise. 

The Government will also have opportunity to ex- 
ercise wise discretion in the selection of settlers, and 
to establish rules and regulations that will tend to 
prevent speculation, and favor those seeking permanent 
homes in good faith. It is to be assumed that if the 
system justifies itself in practice,, it will gradually be- 
come the favored method of land development, and 
prove to be equally in the interest of landowners, in- 
vestors and homebuilders. The cornerstone of the sys- 
tem is public confidence of the kind that is rarely, if 
ever, enjoyed by purely private enterprise, and that 



210 City Homes on Country Lanes 

can only be supplied where the element of personal 
interest is displaced in favor of the element of disin- 
terested and consecrated public service. 

The first test of the new system will come on the 
side of financing. Will capital invest under such con- 
ditions? Capital craves security, and the best possible 
assurance of reasonable profit. When these two ele- 
ments are present, the real capitalists the mass of 
thrifty, forehanded people neither ask nor expect ex- 
orbitant gains. 

To the extent that the Government commands the 
confidence of the investing public, capital will undoubt- 
edly respond to the invitation to invest, on the basis 
of a disinterested and scientific report, to be followed 
by a disinterested and scientific administration. The 
homebuilding public itself is able to finance its opera- 
tions in large part. It possesses one singular ad- 
vantage, as compared with any other public; that is 
what might be called "the citizenship asset," or the 
increment in value instantly added to land by the pres- 
ence of permanent population, and the improvements 
that necessarily accompany it. This consideration en- 
hances the security, both in amount and in character, 
and should powerfully assist the financing of such 
homebuilding projects. 

The Liberty-Bond campaign demonstrated the tre- 
mendous potentiality of the public as investors. Next 
to the need of sustaining the country in the midst of 
war, perhaps nothing would appeal so powerfully to 
this great potential capitalist as a constructive policy 
that aims to cover America with independent homes. 



CHAPTER III 

THE ORGANIZATION OF THE GARDEN CITY 

THE value of the public service described in the 
preceding chapter will become instantly obvious 
to the reader who visualizes a group of country- 
minded people dwelling in a large city, but yearning for 
the home-in-a-garden experience. 

Who is to select the site for their garden homes? 
Who is to pass upon all the vital elements in the situa- 
tion soil, water supply, drainage, transportation fa- 
cilities, price of land, and terms of payment? Who is 
to plan, construct and administer at least in their 
earlier stages the various public utilities required in a 
garden city that is intended to supply the highest con- 
ditions of modern life? Who is to organize the various 
activities of the community, social and commercial, 
during the formative period that always intervenes 
before the people have found themselves? 

In a word, where shall leadership be found the kind 
of leadership that will command the confidence of both 
capital and homeseekers? 

Such leadership can not come from the real-estate 
fraternity, because they approach the problem from 
the wrong angle. The real-estate fraternity has, in- 
deed, done a mighty work of national upbuilding in 
many parts of the country, and in recent years, it has 
tended to put more social spirit into its work. It has 

211 



City Homes on Country Lanes 

been virtually our only reliance in widening the founda- 
tion of urban communities, and largely so in the ex- 
tension of rural development. If its contribution to 
these results were suddenly subtracted from the sum 
of national greatness, it would leave many gaping 
holes. But it possesses this fatal weakness that it 
is animated by selfish interest, aiming at private profit. 
It is, then, primarily the expression of the speculative 
instinct; and only secondarily the expression of the 
social spirit. 

It is estimated that the present home shortage in the 
United States reaches the astounding figure of 2,000,- 
000. The Senate Committee on Reconstruction, under 
the able and devoted leadership of Senator Calder of 
New York, estimates that $5,000,000,000 is needed to 
build homes a situation that calls for a higher leader- 
ship than the real-estate fraternity, with all its enter- 
prise and constructive imagination, is able to furnish. 

The policy embodied in Senator Smoot's "Rural 
Homes Bill" would substitute national for private lead- 
ership in this great field of effort, while still preserving 
individual initiative, and relying on private capital to 
furnish the sinews. The policy is expected to effect a 
very great saving in the cost of land, largely because it 
can readily eliminate most of the selling expense, which 
usually ranges from 20 to 40 per cent in the case of 
private real-estate operations. This is possible because 
the people so readily Follow the Flag, as has been shown 
over and over again in the opening of public lands. 
In a recent instance where the land was free, but water 
rights cost about a hundred dollars an acre, such an 
offering by the Government was over-subscribed nearly 



The Organization of the Garden City 213 

two hundred times, and that when the trend away from 
the land was at its maximum. Great savings could also 
be made in the cost of material and construction be- 
cause of wholesale operations and of the standardiza- 
tion that could be effected in building the houses and 
furnishing the various equipment for garden homes. 

Is there any middle ground between outright private 
enterprise, on the one hand, and Government leadership 
on the other? The best answer to this question is the 
extraordinary experience of the National War Garden 
Commission sketched in a previous chapter. In that 
instance, the finest public spirit leaped to meet a great 
emergency, without waiting for one line of legislation, 
or asking a penny from the public treasury. It proved 
in the highest degree efficient, accomplishing monu- 
mental results; but it ended with the passing of the 
emergency; it was a part of that spiritual exaltation 
that enabled the Nation to perform miracles in every 
department of its life. 

It might not be impossible, though it certainly would 
be difficult, to evolve a similar spirit and organization 
to meet the needs of peace. In fact, there is a wide edu- 
cational sphere for such a work a sphere that must, 
and doubtless will, be occupied by forces even now in 
operation. These are the forces of public opinion. 
They need to be organized and widely extended, in 
order that the Nation may be aroused, inspired, in- 
structed ; but when it comes to leadership in the actual 
building of the Nation on the soil, why should not the 
Government itself assume the responsibility? It has 
all the facilities in its various departments, which could 
be readily coordinated into an effective whole. Above 



City Homes on Country Lanes 

all, it possesses the confidence of the people in a degree 
that no private organization, however enlightened and 
unselfish, can ever hope to attain. 

I repeat : It is not money, but the right sort of leader- 
ship that the people have a right to expect from their 
Government. The country-minded masses in our cities 
can pay for garden homes about as readily as they can 
pay rent on city apartments, if they can only be shown 
the way. It would be not only kindly and humane, but 
absolutely constitutional, for the Government to "pro- 
mote the general welfare" by this means. 

The scientific organization of a garden city involves 
not merely the selection, purchase and improvement of 
the site, including public facilities and private dwellings, 
but the setting up of advanced forms of social and 
economic life. These things take care of themselves 
after a while, but not at the beginning. Take the 
matter of cooperation in buying and selling: The 
argument for the system is unanswerable. It is pre- 
posterous to have a number of little competing stores, 
duplicating all the processes and all the expense in- 
volved in distribution, when one fine central department 
store, cooperatively owned and managed, ought to serve 
the community infinitely better. If I were founding a 
garden city in almost any European country, I should 
not hesitate to adopt the better way; nor would the 
people consent to consider anything else. Cooperation 
is in the European blood ; but not nearly as much so in 
the American blood. Many of us have had experi- 
ence and "the burnt child dreads the fire." 

The establishment of a successful cooperative enter- 
prise on a purely democratic basis requires fidelity to 



The Organization of the Garden City 

the principle on the part of the membership, and a 
willingness to make some sacrifices at the beginning. 
The temptation to turn their backs on their own store 
in order to make immediate savings is often too strong 
to be resisted. In the long run it would pay better 
to be good cooperators, but it happens that many 
people have their eyes fixed on the short run, and if 
they can take a ten-dollar bill and buy eleven-dollars' 
worth of goods at a bargain sale, it is hard for them 
to realize that, by crippling their own store, they may 
be losing a dollar in the end instead of making one. The 
problem is to preserve the solidarity of the community 
in support of its cooperative institutions. This prob- 
lem is likely to be particularly difficult in garden cities 
lying close to a great town, where the people go back 
and forth every day. Under these circumstances it is 
incumbent upon the responsible founders of the com- 
munity to consider very carefully whether the coopera- 
tive store, sound as it is in principle, would be wise in 
practice. 

Another difficulty is the dissension which frequently 
arises over management both as to methods and per- 
sonnel. I could relate instances from my own experi- 
ence which would seem ludicrous, if they hadn't been 
so tragic ; instances where successful business was 
established, then incontinently wrecked by the struggle 
of the factions over the manager's job, which paid but 
a pitiful salary, and no thanks. 

Another prolific cause of trouble arises from the 
question of credits. The private merchant can extend 
or refuse credit without creating serious enmity, but it 
is a different thing in the case of the cooperative mer- 



216 City Homes on Country Lanes 

chant. The man who has been refused credit is very 
likely to raise a rebellion, with the object of overthrow- 
ing the management. Where the choice of manager, 
in the first instance, is left to the town meeting, it very 
often happens that the best vote-getter is not the best 
business man. After a while the community learns 
"Who's Who," but the choice is usually made before 
there has been opportunity to take stock of the new 
citizenship. 

For all these reasons, the cooperative store should be 
thoughtfully considered by the founders before it is 
included in the scheme of institutions. The truth is 
that the plan can not be successful in the best and 
highest sense, unless the people are animated by the 
true spirit of cooperation. Without this spirit, the 
enterprise is bound to fail. Perhaps it ought to fail. 
The game is not worth the candle, unless the spiritual 
value of brotherhood is realized ; unless men and women 
truly prefer to work for and with each other, rather 
than against each other. 

Twenty years ago, I should have urged the coopera- 
tive store as one of the foundation stones of the garden 
city. I still believe it eminently desirable. To me, it 
would seem pitiful that the community should be de- 
prived of its benefits, both spiritual and material; but 
we learn by experience, and my experience has taught 
me this : Cooperation can only be established in a small 
American community by means of the strong hand, re- 
sorting to strong methods. It can not be left entirely 
to voluntary action ; nor can the management be safely 
left wholly to popular choice at the beginning. Utah 
made a success of cooperative institutions, because they 





THE COOPERATIVE DEPARTMENT STORE 

Upper picture shows such a store at Atascadcro, California; lower picture, interior view 
of same store 



The Organization of the Garden City 217 

were an integral part of a great social system taught in 
the schools and the churches. There have been some 
recent instances of success in new communities governed 
by a single powerful influence. 

I should suggest three precautions in the organiza- 
tion of cooperative stores for garden cities : 

1. In order to make sure that everybody shall con- 
tribute to the necessary capital, and in the same pro- 
portion, the price of the stock should be incorporated 
in the price of the land and made inseparable therefrom. 
In this way, adequate capital would be assured from 
the beginning, and the danger that has often recurred 
the danger that many would seek to enjoy the 
benefits of the enterprise without sharing its risks or 
burdens would be avoided. 

2. Provision should be made for one commodious and 
attractive department store, which might well have ac- 
commodations for bank and postoffice, and restrictions 
placed in the deeds preventing the sale or use of any 
other property for business purposes this, as a means 
of preventing the growth of mushroom competition 
which is likely to do considerable harm and very little 
good. 

3. For a period of three to five years sole manage- 
ment should be vested in the parent corporation, or in 
the Government agency having charge of the enterprise 
when the principle of national leadership becomes ef- 
fective. 

With these precautions, there would be reasonable 
assurance of a store in which every landowner would 
be a partner ; mushroom competition, with its unsightly 
buildings, would be avoided; and there would be no 



218 City Homes on Country Lanes 

occasion for internecine struggles over the manage- 
ment until the pioneer period had been safely passed 
and the enterprise become firmly established. Under 
these conditions the people would get the benefits of 
cooperation without its dangers and drawbacks, though 
they would do so at the cost of accepting a certain 
amount of autocracy. But without the assurance of 
sufficient capital and good management, cooperative en- 
terprises are most hazardous undertakings. 

The organization of a beautiful social life, as out- 
lined in a previous chapter, presents few difficulties. 
Even here, however, the founders should supply leader- 
ship until the new institutions have taken root and 
begun to flourish. 

Another provision of great importance in such a com- 
munity is the demonstration place. This should take 
the form of the ideal home-in-a-garden, brought to its 
fullest development at the earliest possible time. In- 
deed, it ought to be one of the very earliest steps in the 
construction programme, if it is to have the highest use- 
fulness. Men have a picture in their minds, which they 
have, perhaps, reduced to paper, but they must see the 
living thing established on the earth in order to compre- 
hend it in its perfection and its manifold variety. The 
making of such a demonstration place naturally requires 
technical knowledge, experience, and devotion to the 
ideals of the garden home. There are a number of 
colonies in California which, if they have accomplished 
nothing else, have been the nurseries of such skill, ex- 
perience and spirit, and they may now be drawn upon 
to plant the seeds of the New Earth throughout America 
and the world. 



CHAPTER IV 

THE FARM CITY AND THE GARDEN CITY 

But since we live in an epoch of change, and, too, probably 
of revolution, and thoughts not to be put aside are in the minds 
of all men capable of thought, I am obliged to affirm the one 
principle which can and in the end will close all epochs of revo- 
lution that each man shall possess the ground that he can use, 
and no more. John Ruskin. 

THE garden city is, of course, designed chiefly 
for city workers with country minds. The prin- 
ciples of the garden home are, however, capable 
of application to larger units within reasonable limita- 
tions. 

The Farm City is a term now coming into use to 
describe a new form of rural life in which much emphasis 
is given to the social side. As the people of the garden 
city will depend for cash income chiefly, if not wholly, 
upon their business or employment in the big town, so 
the people of the Farm City will depend entirely upon 
the land. Even so, the unit of ownership in the Farm 
City should be much smaller than that now generally 
prevailing in the agricultural industry. Methods of 
cultivation should be higher and more intensive. A 
system of agriculture suited to the climate and locality 
should be carefully worked out in advance. There would 
be the same need for demonstration and instruction as 
in a garden city, and far greater need of organized 
buying and selling. Civic centers, with well-planned 

219 



City Homes on Country Lanes 

social and intellectual life, would be feasible in the Farm 
City, and should also be included in the founders' plan. 
Finally, the Farm City should not be located at any 
great distance from an urban center. Naturally, it 
would be beyond the district feasible for garden cities 
whose inhabitants go back and forth to town each day. 

To speak in more concrete terms, one might say that 
a circle of from ten to fifteen miles around a great city 
would mark the logical limitations of the garden-city 
area, at least until means of transit become cheaper and 
quicker ; while a circle of from forty to fifty miles would 
mark out the logical limitations of the Farm City area. 
Abundant land can be had for both purposes almost 
everywhere within these limitations; hence, it is un- 
necessary to go farther. 

The size of the holding under the Farm-City plan is 
a matter only to be determined by experience. Plainly 
it should not be a rigid unit, since men differ so widely 
in experience, taste, amount of capital, and size of 
family. The best unit would be so much land as each 
family could use to the best advantage without hiring 
help. This rule could not be literally enforced at all 
seasons, unless, perhaps, by exchange of labor among 
neighbors; but it is a sound ideal, and should be ap- 
proximated as nearly as possible. The country needs 
not more tenants and hired-men, but more self-employ- 
ing proprietors. 

When a Farm City is near enough to a large urban 
center, with good transportation facilities, a very small 
holding will suffice to yield a good living to an indus- 
trious family. This is particularly true when poultry 
or truck gardening, or a combination of both, is the 



The Farm City and the Garden City 

reliance for cash income. So low as from two to five 
acres will support a family in comfortable circum- 
stances, if they know how to do it. This unit is com- 
mon in Holland, Denmark, and France. There are 
many such "pocket-handkerchief" farms in Utah and 
California ; and there are "one-acre farmers" who have 
done well. Usually they specialize on a very restricted 
line of products for market, while raising a variety of 
things for home consumption. 

Prince Kropotkin has written convincingly along 
this line, as have others. But Bolton Hall, with his 
"Three Acres and Liberty" and "A Little Land and a 
Living," is the thinker and teacher to whom I am most 
deeply indebted for faith and inspiration in this line 
of work. Many a smiling garden, and many a humble 
roof, trace back to the study of this scholarly man 
and lover of the race. How far his influence has gone 
no man can say. 

It is quite possible, however, to preserve nearly all 
the attractive features of the home-in-a-garden system, 
where the holding reaches from ten to forty acres ; and 
it seems probable that these are the figures which will 
be most generally adopted, in the United States at 
least, during the next decade. But that will by no 
means mark the end of the evolution of forms of coun- 
try life which aim to raise the standard of living to the 
highest levels. 

It is probable that future development will proceed 
along two well-marked and divergent lines. In one line 
the social and spiritual considerations will be sub- 
ordinated to the production of wealth. In the other, 
the production of wealth, as represented by large sur- 



222 City Homes on Country Lanes 

plus crops for world markets, will be subordinated to 
the higher good of humanity. The former will require 
the use of broad acres, labor-saving machinery, and 
great numbers of hired hands ; for it will be industrial 
farming pure and simple. The latter will be the home- 
in-a-garden with organized garden and farm cities. 
Organization will begin with wholesale purchase and im- 
provement of land, going on through all departments of 
their social and economic life, and reach upward to the 
spiritual heights. 

The determining factor will be that of capital re- 
quirement. While large capital will be essential to the 
industrial farm, comparatively little capital will suffice 
for the garden home or farm. 

The development clearly foreshadowed by the in- 
exorable law of social and economic growth may be 
stated thus: "Big farms bigger; small farms smaller." 

While I have quite deliberately refrained from dis- 
cussing the vexed question of land tenure in these pages, 
a question that will never seriously arise until men 
have a far keener appreciation of the earth as the 
source of all material good than now obtains, at least 
in the United States it ought to be said that the gen- 
uine home-builder, and not the speculator, is the man 
who deserves consideration in the shaping of our social 
policies. In California, where these policies are fur- 
thest advanced, the settler in state colonies is required 
to live on his land ten years; if he desires to sell and 
move away within that period, he must obtain written 
consent of the State Board of Land Settlement. This 
will be given when circumstances warrant, but if the 
settler goes, he is not permitted to carry away that por- 



The Farm City and the Garden City 

tion of "unearned increment" in his land created by the 
labor and presence of the entire community. 

An interesting case arose quite early in the history 
of the movement. At the end of the first year a settler 
applied for permission to sell. It was found that the 
price he would receive represented a profit of $8,000 
on his investment. He was told that this profit was 
due, in large part, not to his own exertions, but to the 
achievement wrought out by a hundred families, with all 
their private and public improvements. He was per- 
mitted to sell at a price that returned his entire invest- 
ment, together with 6 per cent interest and $2,000 more 
as compensation for his year's work. The remainder 
of the profit was given to the community that had 
rightfully earned it and could apply it to useful pur- 
poses for the common benefit. 

Such a system does no injustice to the man who is 
working in good faith to build a home on the land. The 
other kind have no moral right to speculate at the ex- 
pense of their fellows. 



PART THREE 

MECHANICS OF THE GARDEN HOME 



CHAPTER I* 



MAKING THE SOIL OVER 

THE home gardener must use the soil he has, but 
he can improve it if it is poor, and he must do 
this as far as possible. Stable manure will help 
even the richest soil, and you are not likely to use too 
much of it. During a single season professional gar- 
deners apply as much as six inches of it. Coarse manure 
should be applied and thoroughly plowed or spaded 
under in the fall. In the spring, fine, rotted manure is 
applied, just before plowing, or spading, preceding the 
planting of any crop. If the ground is fairly rich, and 
well-rotted manure is scarce, the manure may be scat- 
tered in the row only, and should be mixed into the soil 
before the planting of seed. 

Loam is the best garden soil. Sand, with manure, 
gives good results. Clay is hardest to work, but is 
greatly improved by well-rotted manure and vegetable 
matter, called humus. These should be well worked in 
with hoe and rake. Sifted coal ashes, entirely free from 
clinkers, will help loosen up clay when mixed into it, 
but will not remove an acid condition nor increased 
fertility. 

* This chapter, as well as the two following, are taken by per- 
mission, from instructions prepared for the National War Garden 
Commission, by twenty-two leading American experts. The 
Planting Table, and the page entitled "Arrangement of Season's 
Crops," are from the same eminent source. 

227 



City Homes on Country Lanes 

Many gardeners experience difficulty in obtaining 
supplies of well-rotted manure. In such cases, com- 
mercial fertilizers should be used. Even when stable 
manure has been secured and worked into the soil, it 
is well to supplement with moderate quantities of quick- 
acting fertilizer, in order to give plants an early start, 
and hasten maturity. 

It is safest to rely upon the ready-mixed fertilizers, 
usually obtainable at seed and hardware stores. Sev- 
eral specially prepared mixtures in convenient packages 
are now on the market. For large areas 100 to 200- 
pound bags may be obtained. A mixture containing 
from 3 to 4 per cent nitrogen, and from 8 to 10 per 
cent phosphoric acid is about right for the average gar- 
den. Your dealer will inform you on this point. If the 
fertilizer also contains potash, so much the better. 

Where no manure is used the fertilizer should be 
spread over the surface of the finely prepared seed-bed 
at the rate of 5 pounds for a plot 10-feet square, just 
before planting. The surface soil should then be thor- 
oughly raked, so as to mix the fertilizer evenly to a 
depth of 2 inches. Never place seeds or transplanted 
plants in direct contact with fertilizer. Thorough mix- 
ing of the fertilizer with the soil is essential to prevent 
injury to seed or roots. Where manure has been worked 
into the soil, reduce the fertilizer application one-half. 

Tomatoes, egg-plants, spinach, and some other crops 
requiring long growing seasons, are materially benefited 
by a second application of fertilizer when half grown. 
Side dressings of this kind should be scattered between 
the rows at the rate of four ounces (one-half pint) to 
ten feet of row, when rows are spaced two feet apart, 



Making the Soil Over 229 

and pro rata for rows spaced a greater or lesser dis- 
tance. To insure even distribution, mix the fertilizer 
with fine, dry earth just before spreading. 

Compost is especially desirable when quick growth is 
wanted. Compost is thoroughly rotted manure or or- 
ganic matter. It should be prepared from six to twelve 
months before being used, by putting the manure and 
other materials in piles having perpendicular sides and 
flat tops. These piles are usually from two to four 
feet high and six to eight feet long. 

Besides the usual waste of garden rubbish, there is a 
large waste of leaves, weeds, and the skins and other 
unused portions of fruits and vegetables. These should 
all be thrown on the compost pile to decay for use on the 
garden next spring. Destroy all plants which are dis- 
eased. The compost pile should be built up in alternate 
layers of vegetable refuse a foot thick, and earth an 
inch or more thick. The earth helps to rot the vegetable 
matter, when mixed with it. The top of the pile should 
be left flat, in order that the rain may enter and help 
in the process of decay. 

If the pile can be forked over once a month when not 
frozen and the contents well mixed together, it will de- 
cay quite rapidly and be in good usable condition in the 
spring. The compost may be either spread over the 
garden and spread under, or it may be scattered in the 
rows before the seed are sown. This is, of course, not 
as rich as stable manure, but it is a good substitute. 
Compost is also used as a top dressing during the grow- 
ing season, for hastening growth. 

In the cities and towns tons of leaves are burned every 
fall. This is a loss which ought to be prevented. These 



230 City Homes on Country Lanes 

leaves, properly composted with other vegetable waste 
and earth, would be worth hundreds of dollars to the 
gardens next spring. 

In planning a permanent garden a space should be 
reserved near the hotbed, or seed bed, and in this space 
should be piled, as soon as pulled, all plants which are 
free from disease and insects. This applies to all vege- 
tables, and especially to peas and beans, as these belong 
to a group of plants which take nitrogen from the air 
during growth, and store it in their roots. When these 
plants are decayed they will return to the soil, not only 
much of the plant-food taken from it during their 
growth, but additional nitrogen as well. Nitrogen in 
the soil is necessary for satisfactory leaf growth. The 
material so composed should be allowed to decay 
throughout the winter, and when needed should be used 
according to the instructions given for using compost. 

Prepared sheep manure, when procurable at reason- 
able price, is possibly the safest concentrated fertilizer. 
It should be used in small quantities, rather than spread 
broadcast. Scatter it along the row before seed is 
sown ; or, apply by mixing it with water in a pail stir- 
ring the mixture to the consistency of thin mush, and 
pour it along the rows of the plants. 

Green manure is useful as a fertilizer. It consists 
of green plants turned under by plowing or spading. 
Rye is the most satisfactory for this purpose. If 
planted in July or August, the crop may be turned un- 
der in the spring. When not turned under until spring, 
the growth will prevent the leaching of soluble plant 
food, or the washing away of rich soil. 

In sowing rye for this purpose, use at the rate of one 



Making the Soil Over 231 

pound of seed to a strip of ground 50 feet long by 10 
feet wide. If the ground is rough or hard, it should 
be cultivated just before the seed is sown and then cul- 
tivated again to cover the seed. Sow the seed between 
the rows of crops not yet gathered. Rye is very hardy 
and will sprout, even though there is frost nearly every 
night. At a cost of about five cents for a pound of 
seed, a garden of 10x50 feet can thus be treated to an 
application of green manure. The green rye plants 
soon decay when turned under, and answer the same 
purpose as a light dressing of manure. 

Green manure, however, should not be relied upon to 
do the work of stable manure, as it does not provide 
phosphorus or potassium. 

Land which has long been unused, or land in lawns, 
is apt to be sour. To remedy this condition, apply, 
evenly, one pound of air-slaked lime, or two pounds of 
ground limestone, to every 30 square-feet. The lime 
should be applied and raked in to a depth of two inches, 
when the seed bed is being prepared in the spring. In- 
stead of lime, two pounds of unleached wood-ashes may 
be used. Do not apply lime at the same time as manure 
or mixed fertilizers, as it will cause loss of nitrogen. 

As an addition to soil, lime is of considerable value, 
besides correcting acidity, it changes the physical 
structure of the soil. One of the elements of lime is 
calcium, which is required for plant growth. 

Small livestock and the garden work nicely together. 
The garden feeds the chickens with green stuff; the 
chickens feed the garden with natural fertilizer of a 
superior brand. The same is true of squabs, rabbits 
and goats. 



CHAPTER II 

HOW TO HAVE A GOOD GARDEN 

HAVE a plan for your garden drawn to scale 
on paper before you start, to give proper 
order in planting and to enable you to buy the 
right amount of seeds in advance while the selection is 
good. 

Put in one general group small plants like beets, 
onions, lettuce, carrots, radishes and parsnips. In an- 
other general group put larger plants like corn, to- 
matoes and potatoes. Spreading ground- vines, like 
melons and cucumbers, which need wider spacing, should 
be put in another general group. The reason for this 
grouping is that the various plants in a group need 
similar general treatment as well as spacing. 

In making a plan, provide space in which to enter 
costs and yield of the various crops. This will give you 
a complete record which will be useful another year. 
Another helpful use of the plan is that it will guide 
you in the rotation of next year's crops. For this pur- 
pose save your plan for next season. 

In the location of a garden it is not always possible 
to choose conditions as to sunlight. It is important, 
therefore, that in the arrangement of the varieties of 
vegetables which are to be planted, due care should be 
given to providing the greatest exposure to the sun for 
those crops which need it most. Those plants which 

232 



How to Have a Good Garden 233 

must ripen their fruit, such as tomatoes and egg-plant, 
require the greatest amount of sunshine, while lettuce, 
spinach, kale and other leaf crops, require relatively 
less. Foliage crops must have at least three hours of 
sunlight a day, and plants which ripen fruits at least 
five hours a day. This is important. 

It is important to remember that plant diseases and 
insects are apt to thrive in a spot in which they have 
become established. For this reason, those who make 
gardens should take care not to place the individual 
crops in the spot in which the same crops grew the year 
before. Varying the arrangement of the garden in this 
way will reduce the danger from disease and insects. 
The same vegetables in the same place each year exhaust 
certain food elements, and reduced yields are sure to 
result. 

For early planting a hotbed may be made, located in 
a sheltered spot with southern exposure, where it will 
receive a generous supply of sun. A width of 6 feet is 
desirable, and the length should be such as to enable 
the use of standard 3x6 ft., hotbed sash. A simple 
box-like frame, 12 inches high in the rear, and 8 inches 
high in front will hold the sash, and give a better angle 
for the rays of the sun. 

Dig a pit I 1 /*? to 2 feet deep, the size of the sash- 
frame to be used. Line the sides of this with boards 
or planks, brick or concrete, and make a tile drain, or 
place stones on the bottom of the pit to carry off sur- 
plus water. This pit is to be filled with fresh horse 
manure. The manure will require special treatment be- 
fore being placed in the pit. It should be thrown into a 
pile and allowed to heat. When it has heated and is 



City Homes on Country Lanes 

steaming, fork it over into a new pile, throwing the out- 
side material into the center. When the new pile has 
become well heated, fork the material once more into a 
new pile. This will require from ten days to two weeks, 
and is important, in that it gets rid of excessive heat. 
After this process, fill the pit with the manure, packed 
down firmly and evenly, level with the surface of the 
surrounding earth. On top of this manure make a 
covering of good garden loam three or four inches deep. 

When the sash has been put in place, the manure 
will generate heat, in addition to the heat that will be 
derived from the sun. After this heat has reached its 
highest point and dropped back to between 80 and 90 
degrees F. the seed should be planted. Use the best seed 
obtainable. Until the seed germinates, the hotbed 
should be kept shaded to hold moisture. This can be 
done by spreading over the sash strips of old carpet, 
heavy cloth, or newspapers. After germination, strong 
light will be needed. The plants must be watered each 
morning on clear days, and the sash left partially open 
for ventilation, as it is necessary to dry the foliage to 
prevent mildew. 

Proper ventilation is essential to the production of 
strong, healthy plants. The sash should be raised 
during the warmest part of the day on the side opposite 
the direction from which the wind is blowing. By open- 
ing it in this way instead of facing the wind, the hotbed 
receives fresh air without receiving direct draft. On 
cold days, raise the sash slightly three or four times a 
day for a few minutes only. In severe weather, cover 
the beds with mats, straw, or manure, to keep in as much 
heat as possible. About two weeks before transplanting 
time the sash should be removed during the day to 



How to Have a Good Garden 

"harden" the plants. While in the hotbed the plants 
should be thoroughly watered, but the water should not 
reach the manure underneath. Early morning is the 
best time for watering, so the plants will be dried before 
night. 

An outdoor hotbed of this character should be started 
in the early spring February or March. 

A cold frame is useful for hardening plants which 
have been started in the hotbed. It is built like a hot- 
bed, but without the pit or manure. It is built on the 
surface of the ground. Good rich soil should be used, 
and the soil kept slightly moist. In mild climates the 
cold frame may be used instead of a hotbed for starting 
plants. It is also used in the fall and early winter for 
growing lettuce, radishes, carrots, parsley, etc. 

Not many implements are required for home garden- 
ing. The essentials are a spade or a garden fork, a hoe, 
a rake with steel teeth, a trowel, a dibble, or pointed 
stick, and a line such as is used by masons, or a piece 
of common string or cord to stretch between two stakes 
for marking off rows. In the case of hard-packed earth 
a pick is useful for digging. For watering, a rubber- 
hose is needed where pipe connections are available. 
Lacking this equipment, a watering-pot should be pro- 
vided. A hand-cultivator or wheel hoe is useful, espe- 
cially in a large garden, and saves much time and labor 
in turning small furrows. With simply attachments it 
is used for stirring the soil and the removal of weeds. 
The garden tractor is the latest implement, and seems 
likely to go into very general use. It costs about $250, 
but several families might cooperate in its purchase and 
use. 

In laying out a new garden city, it might be feasible 



236 City Homes on Country Lanes 

to arrange the gardens in the rear of the houses in each 
block, so that not only the plowing and harrowing, but 
planting and cultivation even some of the harvesting, 
could be done by machinery. This would materially re- 
duce the amount of hand labor to be done. There would 
still remain the berries, fruits, more delicate vegetables, 
flowers, lawns and livestock to be cared for by individual 
hand labor. 

ARRANGEMENT OF SEASON'S CROPS 

Peas, followed by late Tomatoes 

Peas, followed by Celery 

Onion Sets, followed by Turnips 

Corn, followed by Spinach 

Beans (bush) followed by Beets 

Beets, y 2 row; Carrots, i/ 2 row, followed by Corn 

Turnips, followed by Bush Beans 

Potatoes, followed by Spinach 

Spinach, followed by Potatoes 

Cabbage, with Lettuce and Radishes between, followed by Carrots 

Beans, Bush Lima 

Chard, % row; Parsley, % row 

Parsnips, % row (radishes to mark row) ; Salsify, % row 

Corn, followed by Kohlrabi, y a row; Cauliflower, % row 

Peas, followed by Corn 

Beans, Bush Lima 

Early Potatoes, followed by late Cabbage 

Early Tomatoes 

Peppers, y a row; Potatoes, Okra or Egg-plant, y a row 

Potatoes 

Potatoes 

Pole Lima Beans 

Pole Beans 

Corn 

Corn 

Corn 

Cucumbers Squash Squash Musk- 

(bush (winter) melon 

crook-neck) 

Rows are 30 inches apart. If soil is very fertile, rows may be 
closer. 



How to Have a Good Garden 237 

Planting was begun at hotbed end of garden and plantings were 
made a few days apart, to insure a constant supply of vege- 
tables. 

Planting table on page 266. 



Mushroom culture is an art in itself, and an art un- 
known to many scientific gardeners. The late Adrian 
Bussiere was a master of the art, the son and grandson 
of famous Parisian growers. He once reduced his 
knowledge and experience to a brief formula as follows : 

Mushroom culture is not as difficult as many people 
seem to believe; neither is there anything mysterious 
about it ; but, for good results, the few main points to 
be given in this article must be strictly observed. 

This culture can be practiced at all seasons of the 
year, under the conditions that you have (1) a cellar 
or cave where the temperature is rather low and stable, 
about 55 to 60 degrees. Below this temperature the 
growth of the mushroom is too slow, while with a higher 
temperature no mushrooms will grow. In this cave 
the humidity, also, must be constantly maintained. (2) 
The element necessary for their culture is manure from 
horses that work hard, and whose bedding is not 
changed too often. Also, for manure used in mushroom 
culture the bedding should be of wheat straw, or second- 
best oat straw, while the least desirable for this purpose 
is barley straw. All manure older than two weeks must 
be rejected, because in this time it has already started 
to ferment. When in possession of the amount needed 
for your cave, the process of fermentation is started. 
(3) Good spawn from a reliable house. 

In possession of these three conditions, have the 
manure unloaded at your cave, with the water handy for 



238 City Homes on Country Lanes 

sprinkling. To obtain good results not less than three 
cubic yards of manure should be worked. If less is 
needed in your case, let the surplus go to the garden. 
Choose a spot of ground which is hard and even, on 
which to work the manure, and preferably protected 
from the rains. Every forkful should be well shaken out 
to render it evenly mixed, and laid out to form a pile 
8 ft. long, 3 ft. wide, and 1 ft. high. If the manure is 
dry, sprinkle with a very fine sprinkler, so that the wet 
parts are on the outside, while the dryer material stays 
inside. 

After this first layer is made, begin a second on top, 
and so continue until the pile is 4 ft. high. Tramp this 
well down and clean off the sides with the fork to pre- 
vent undue loss of humidity. This operation must be 
repeated three times in summer every five days ; in 
winter, every eight days. The manure is ready for the 
cave when it has lost its first odor. It must be humid 
and of a dark brown color, and when pressed between 
the fingers must not drip. The odor must have changed 
and resemble more the odor of mushrooms. 

Before installing the manure, prepare the frames on 
the floor of your cave, for which purpose lumber 1x12 
is used. The size of the bed must not exceed 4 ft. in 
width, as a larger bed might give an excess of fermenta- 
tion, which is very dangerous in this culture. 

These frames are filled in layers with the prepared 
manure, shaking it up again, forkful after forkful. 
The manure will now undergo another process of fer- 
mentation. With the thermometer, carefully assure 
yourself of the temperature of the bed, which should be 
after eight days about 70 to 75 degrees, to fall to 60 



How to Have a Good Garden 

to 65 degrees, its normal temperature when the bed is 
ready for the spawn. 

The bricks are divided into eight equal pieces, which 
are inserted into the bed (lifting the manure) 2 inches 
deep, 12 inches apart. After about 15 or 20 days the 
spawn will be germinating, which may be noticed by the 
bluish specks around the insertions. This is the sign 
to cover the beds with a layer of good soil, virgin and 
calcareous preferred. This layer must not exceed 1% 
inches, after which the bed is lightly sprinkled. 

The mushroom, being a plant, needs air; therefore a 
good system of ventilation must be established, which is 
worked at night. The ventilation openings are made on 
the east and west sides. 

The passage between the beds must be sprinkled when 
necessary to keep the humidity constant. The beds 
must be sprinkled very moderately. Before the crop 
appears, it is better to not sprinkle at all. 

It takes three months from the reception of the 
manure till the first picking, and the harvest lasts, also, 
about three months. By dividing the space a system of 
rotation can be established to assure a continuous pro- 
duction. 



CHAPTER III 

THE WINTER FOOD SUPPLY 

THE true home gardener will not be content merely 
to draw upon his garden in summer and autumn, 
but will produce a surplus of vegetables, berries 
and fruit to carry his family through the winter and 
well into the spring. 

The National War Garden Commission, in dealing 
with the problem of food supply, put great emphasis 
upon this feature, and rapid strides were made in popu- 
larizing all forms of canning and preserving as a house- 
hold and community art. In the instructions provided 
by the foremost experts the Commission spoke of five 
principal methods, but recommended above all others 
for home use the Single-Period Cold-pack Method, be- 
cause of its simplicity and effectiveness. That method 
is described as follows in the manual prepared by the 
Commission, and distributed among the people by the 
million : 

The prepared vegetables or fruits are blanched in 
boiling water or live steam, then quickly cold-dipped 
and packed at once into hot jars, the contents covered 
with boiling water or syrup, and the jars partially 
sealed and sterilized in boiling water or by steam pres- 
sure. The jars are then sealed tight, tested for leaks 
and stored. 

240 



The Winter Food Supply 

The Single Period Cold-pack Method is a simple and 
sure way of canning. It insures a good color, texture 
and flavor to the vegetable or fruit canned. In using 
this method, sterilization is completed in a single period, 
saving time, fuel and labor. The simplicity of the 
method commends it. Fruits are put up in syrups. 
Vegetables require only salt for flavoring and water to 
fill the container. 

Another advantage is that it is practicable to put 
up food in small as well as large quantities. The house- 
wife who understands the process will find that it pays 
to put up even a single container. Thus, when she has 
a small surplus of some garden crop she should take the 
time necessary to place this food in a container and 
store it for future use. This is true household efficiency. 

A serviceable Single Period Cold-pack canning outfit 
may be made of equipment found in almost any house- 
hold. Any utensil large and deep enough to allow an 
inch of water above jars, and a false bottom beneath 
them, and having a closely fitting cover, may be used for 
sterilizing. A wash-boiler, large lard can or new gar- 
bage pail serves the purpose where canning is to be 
done in large quantities. Into this utensil should be 
placed a wire or wooden rack to hold the jars off the 
bottom, and so constructed as to permit circulation of 
water underneath the jars. 

For lifting glass-top jars, use two button-hooks, or 
similar device. For lifting screw-top jars, suitable lift- 
ers may be bought for a small sum. A milk carrier 
makes a good false bottom, and if this is used the jars 
may be easily lifted out at the end of the sterilization 
period. 



City Homes on Country Lanes 

There are upon the market outfits on the order of 
the wash-boiler or pail type of home-made canner. 
These are excellent and are especially desirable if one 
has considerable quantities of vegetables or fruits to 
put up. There are also commercial canners convenient 
for out-door work, having fire-box and smoke-pipe all in 
one piece with the sterilizing vat. As with the home- 
made outfit, containers are immersed in boiling water. 

Water Seal Outfits are desirable, as the period of 
sterilization is shorter than in the home-made outfit, 
and less fuel is therefore required. The outfit consists 
of two containers, one fitted within the other, and a 
cover which extends into the space between the outer 
and the inner container. The water-jacket makes it 
possible for the temperature in the inner container to be 
raised several degrees above 212 F. 

Canning is very rapid when sterilization is done in 
Steam Pressure Outfits. There are several canners of 
this type. Each is provided with pressure gauge and 
safety valve, and they carry from 5 to 30 pounds of 
steam pressure. This type is suitable for home or 
community canning. 

Aluminum Pressure Outfits are satisfactory for can- 
ning and for general cooking. They carry from 5 to 
30 pounds of steam pressure. Each outfit is provided 
with a steam pressure gauge and safety valve. 

At high altitudes the boiling point of water is below 
212 F. At moderate elevation, satisfactory results 
may be obtained in the use of the hot-water bath by 
increasing the time of sterilization 10 per cent for every 
500 feet above 1,000. To insure best results in very 



The Winter Food Supply 243 

high altitudes, however, a steam-pressure canner, or 
aluminum pressure cooker is recommended to be used. 
This type of canner produces a temperature up to 250 
F. at 15 Ibs. pressure, insuring proper sterilization, and 
also saving time and fuel. A steam pressure canner 
may be bought around $20. Several families may use 
one and divide the cost. 

In using the pressure canners and aluminum cookers 
the following formula is given : 

1. Have water in the canner up to the false bottom, 
but not above it. Keep this water boiling during the 
time that packed jars are being placed in the canner, 
and add water occasionally to prevent its boiling dry. 

2. To prepare product follow instructions as here- 
inafter given. As each jar is packed, set it at once, 
partially sealed, in the canner. The cover of the canner 
may be put in position, but not clamped. 

3. When all of the filled jars are placed in the canner, 
put on the cover and fasten opposite clamps moderately 
tight ; then tighten each pair of clamps fully. 

4. The petcock should be left open until live steam 
escapes from it. The canner should be steam-tight, 
and no steam should escape except through the open 
petcock. When live steam escapes, close the petcock 
completely. 

5. Begin to count time when the steam gauge regis- 
ters the required temperature. 

6. Maintain a uniform pressure during the sterilizing 
period by setting the weight on the arm, when the 
proper pressure is registered on the steam gauge, so 
that surplus steam will escape at that desired pressure. 



244 City Homes on Country Lanes 

A uniform temperature may be maintained also by turn- 
ing down the flame or moving the canner to a less hot 
part of the stove. 

7. When the sterilization period is complete, do not 
allow steam to escape, but allow the canner to cool 
until the steam gauge registers zero. 

8. Open petcock, remove the cover of canner, and 
take out the jars. As each jar is removed, complete 
seal at once. 

For home use, glass jars are more satisfactory for 
canning than tin. Tin cans are used chiefly for canning 
on a large scale for commercial purposes. There are 
many jars of different styles and prices on the market; 
and provided the seal is not defective, equally good re- 
sults may be obtained from all. Glass is a popular 
household choice, because one can see through it, and 
thus have some idea as to the condition of the contents. 
Glass jars may be used for years if properly cared for. 

All types of jars which seal readily may be used. 
Jars having glass tops held in place by bails are espe- 
cially easy to handle while hot. Screw-top jars are 
serviceable. Glass caps held in place by separate metal 
screw bands are now on the market, as well as the one- 
piece sort of former years. Vacuum seal jars are very 
easily managed. Tops for Economy jars should be 
purchased each year. The composition material, which 
takes the place of rubber, should have a rubber-like tex- 
ture. If of mealy consistency it is unfit for use and the 
top will not make a tight seal. 

The color and shape of jars are not of first moment, 
but are to be considered. Containers made of white 
glass should be used if the product is to be offered for 



The Winter Food Supply 245 

sale, as blue or green glass detracts from the appear- 
ance of the contents. Wide-mouthed jars are best for 
packing whole products and are easiest to clean. Small- 
necked bottles can be used for fruit juices. Large- 
mouthed bottles can be used for jams, marmalades and 
jellies. 

Jars should be tested before they are used. Some 
of the important tests are here given : 

1. When using glass-top jars, first examine for 
cracks ; then run a finger around the edge of necks of 
jars, and if there are sharp projections, file them off, or 
scrape them off with an old knife. If left on, they may 
cut rubbers and interfere with perfect sealing. Place 
a top on a jar. It will slip from side to side, but should 
not rock, when tapped. Rocking tops will not make a 
tight seal. Sometimes the fault is with the top and 
sometimes with the neck. Defective jars and tops when 
discarded for canning purposes may be used as con- 
tainers for jams, etc. The top bail should go into posi- 
tion with a light snap. If too loose, it should be taken 
off and bent slightly inward in the center. If too tight, 
bend outward. 

2. In screw-top jars, only the lacquered or vulcanized 
tops should be employed. Screw the top on tightly 
without the rubber. If the tip of a knife or fingernail 
can be inserted under the rim the tops should not be 
used for cold-pack canning. If the defect is very slight, 
however, it may be remedied by pressing a knife handle 
on the lower edge against a hard surface, thus straight- 
ening the offending bulge. Another test is made by put- 
ting on the rubber, screwing the top on tightly, and 
then pulling the rubber out. If the rubber returns to 



246 City Homes on Country Lanes 

place, the top does not fit, and should not be used on the 
jar. 

3. The Vacuum seal jars may be tested in the same 
way as the glass-top jars. See if the tops rock if 
tapped, when placed on the jar without fastening. 

Buy new rubbers every year, as rubbers deteriorate 
from one season to another. A good rubber for cold- 
pack canning must be such as to stand four hours of 
continuous boiling, or one hour under 10 pounds of 
steam pressure. The combination of moist heat plus 
acids and mineral matter in vegetables and fruits tends 
to break down the rubbers during sterilization. Rub- 
bers kept in a hot or very warm place, as for example 
on a shelf near the kitchen range, will deteriorate in 
quality. Be very particular about the rubbers used. 
Spoilage of canned goods has been traced frequently to 
the use of poor rubbers. 

It is always well to test rubbers when buying. A 
good rubber will return to its original size when 
stretched. It will not crease when bent double and 
pinched. It should fit the neck of the jar snugly. It 
is cheaper to discard a doubtful rubber than to lose a 
jar of canned goods. 

Vegetables and fruits should be sorted according to 
color, size and ripeness. This is called grading. It 
insures the best pack and uniformity of flavor and 
texture to the canned product, which is always desir- 
able. 

The most important steps in canning are the pre- 
liminary steps of blanching, cold-dipping, packing in 
hot, clean containers, adding hot water at once, then 
immediately half-sealing jars and putting into the 



The Winter Food Supply 247 

sterilizer. Spoilage of products is nearly always due 
to carelessness in one of these steps. Blanching is 
necessary with all vegetables and some fruits. It in- 
sures thorough cleansing and removes objectionable 
odors and flavors and excess acids. It starts the flow 
of coloring matter. It reduces the bulk of greens and 
causes shrinkage of fruits, increasing the quantity 
which may be packed in a container, which saves stor- 
age space. 

Blanching consists in plunging the vegetables or 
fruits into boiling water or exposing them to steam for 
a short time. For blanching in boiling water, place 
them in a wire basket, or piece of cheesecloth. The 
blanching time varies from one to fifteen minutes, as 
shown in time table, and the products should be kept 
under water throughout the period. Begin counting 
time when the articles are first placed in boiling water 
or steam. 

Spinach and other greens should not be blanched in 
hot water. They must be blanched in steam to prevent 
the loss of mineral salts, volatile oils and other valuable 
substances. To do this, place them in a colander and 
set this into a vessel which has a tightly fitting cover. 
In this vessel there should be an inch or two of water, 
but the water must not be allowed to touch the greens. 
Another method is to suspend the greens in a closed 
vessel above an inch or two of water. This may be 
done in a wire basket or in cheesecloth. Allow the 
water to boil in the closed vessel fifteen minutes. 
Excellent results are obtained also, by the use of a 
steam-cooker or steam-pressure canner. 

When the blanching is complete, remove the vege- 



City Homes on Country Lanes 

tables or fruits from the boiling water or steam, and 
plunge them once or twice into cold water the colder 
the better. This latter process is the Cold Dip. It 
hardens the pulp under the skin, so that the products 
are not injured by peeling. It also sets the coloring 
matter. Do not allow the products to stand in the 
cold water. 

Always blanch and cold-dip only enough products to 
fill one or two jars at a time. The blanching and cold- 
dipping should follow at once when the vegetable or 
fruit is prepared, and the packing into jars should 
immediately follow the blanching and cold-dip. 

Processing is the sterilization treatment to which 
products are subjected after packing them into jars. 
As soon as the jar is filled put the rubber and cap in 
place and partially seal by adjusting top bail, or 
screwing on top with thumb and little finger. If Econ- 
omy jars are used the top should be held in place 
with clamp. The jar should then be put into sterilizer 
at once. In using the hot-water bath outfit, count the 
time of sterilization from the time the water begins to 
boil. The water in the sterilizer should be at or just 
below the boiling point when jars are put in. With the 
Water Seal Outfit begin counting time when the ther- 
mometer reaches 214 F. With the Steam Pressure 
Outfit, begin counting time when the gauge reaches the 
number of pounds called for in directions. 

When the processing is finished, at once remove and 
seal each jar. 

It is important to plan your work so that whatever 
may be needed will be ready for use. Arrange every- 



The Winter Food Supply 249 

thing conveniently in advance. Preliminary provisions 
include : 

1. A reliable alarm clock in a convenient place (set 
to ring when the sterilizing is done). 

2. All the necessary equipment in place before be- 
ginning work. 

3. Jars, tops and rubbers carefully tested. 

4. Fresh, sound fruits and vegetables. 

5. Plenty of hot water for sterilizer, blanching, 
warming the jars, and for pouring into packed jars. 

6. Salt or syrup at hand. 

7. Reliable instructions carefully followed. 

8. Absolute cleanliness. 

It must not be forgotten that success in canning 
demands careful attention to every detail. No step 
should be slighted. Follow one set of instructions 
closely, and do not attempt to combine two, no matter 
how good both of them may be. To attempt to follow 
two sets will inevitably cause spoilage. 

The experience of the U. S. Department of Agri- 
culture during the last five years indicates that 75 
per cent of the spoilage has been due to the use of poor 
rubbers, the use of old tops on screw-top jars, 'and 
improper sealing, resulting from the use of defective 
joints, springs, and caps. Another fruitful source of 
trouble is that people sometimes undertake to can stale 
or wilted vegetables. No amount of sterilizing will 
overcome staleness. Careless handling is also sure to 
cause loss. Absolute cleanliness in every step is essen- 
tial. 

In sterilizing, care must be exercised to see that the 



250 City Homes on Country Lanes 

temperature is high enough, and maintained for the 
proper length of time. 

In other words, do not blame the method for failure. 
Follow directions carefully and prevent failure. 

In canning by the Single Period Cold-pack method, 
it is important that careful attention be given to every 
detail. Do not undertake canning until you have 
familiarized yourself with the various steps, which are 
as follows: 

1. Vegetables should be canned as soon as possible 
after picking; the same day is best. Early morning is 
the best time for gathering. Fruits should be as fresh 
as possible. 

2. Before starting work, have on the stove the boiler, 
or other holder in which the sterilizing is to be done, a 
pan of boiling water for use in blanching, a vessel con- 
taining water to be used for warming several jars at a 
time, and a kettle of boiling water for use in filling j ars 
of vegetables ; or, if canning fruits, the syrup to be used 
in filling the jars. Arrange on this working table all 
necessary equipment, including instructions. 

3. Test jars and tops. All jars, rubbers and tops 
should be clean and hot at the moment of using. 

4. Wash and grade product according to size and 
ripeness. (Cauliflower should be soaked one hour in salt 
water, to remove insects, if any are present. Put berries 
into a colander and wash, by allowing cold water to 
flow over them, to prevent bruising.) 

5. Prepare vegetable or fruit. Remove all but an 
inch of the tops from beets, parsnips and carrots, and 
the strings from green beans. Pare squash, remove 
seeds and cut into small pieces. Large vegetables 



The Winter Food Supply 251 

should be cut into pieces to make close pack possible. 
Remove pits from cherries, peaches and apricots. 

6. Blanch in boiling water or steam as directed. 
Begin to count time when the product is immersed. 

7. Cold-dip, but do not allow product to stand in 
cold water at this or any other stage. 

8. Pack in hot jars, which rest on cloths wrung out 
in hot water. Fill the jars to within *4 to % inch 
of tops. (In canning Lima beans, squash, corn, peas, 
pumpkin and sweet potatoes fill the jars to within 1 
inch of the top, as these vegetables swell during 
sterilization. In canning berries, to insure a close pack, 
put a two or three inch layer of berries on the bottom 
of the jar and press down gently with a spoon. Con- 
tinue in this manner with other layers until jar is filled. 
Fruits cut in half should be arranged with pit surface 
down.) 

9. Add salt and then boiling water to vegetables to 
cover them. To fruits, add hot syrup or water. 

10. Place a new wet rubber on jar and put top in 
place. 

11. With bail-top jar adjust top bail only, leaving 
lower bail, or snap, free. With screw-top jar, strew 
the top on lightly, using only the thumb and little finger. 
(This partial sealing makes it possible for steam gen- 
erated within the jar to escape, and prevents breakage.) 
On vacuum seal jars adjust spring securely. 

12. Place the jars on rack in boiler or other steril- 
izer. If the home-made or commercial hot-water bath 
outfit is used, enough water should be in the boiler to 
come at least one inch above the tops of the jars, and 
the water, in evaporating, should never be allowed to 



City Homes on Country Lanes 

drop to the level of these tops. In using the hot-water 
bath outfit, begin to count sterilizing time when the 
water begins to boil. Water is at the boiling point when 
it is jumping or rolling all over. Water is not boiling 
when bubbles merely form on the bottom, or when they 
begin to rise to the top. The water must be kept boiling 
all of the time during the period of sterilization. 

13. Consult time-table, and at the end of the required 
sterilizing period, remove the jars from the sterilizer. 
Place them on a wooden rack or on several thicknesses 
of cloth to prevent breakage. Complete the sealing of 
jars. With bail top jars this is done by pushing thp 
snap down; with screw-top jars by screwing cover on 
tightly. 

14. Turn the jars upside down as a test for leakage 
and leave them in this position until cold. Let them 
cool rapidly, but be sure that no draft reaches them, 
as a draft will cause breakage. (If there is any doubt 
that a bail-top jar is perfectly sealed a simple test 
may be made by loosening the top bail and lifting the 
jar by taking hold of the top with the fingers. The 
internal suction should hold the top tightly in place 
when thus lifted. If the top comes off, put on a new 
wet rubber and sterilize 15 minutes longer for vegetables 
and 5 minutes longer for fruits.) With screw-top jars 
try the tops while the jars are cooling, or as soon as 
they have cooled; and, if loose, tighten them by screw- 
ing on more closely. Vacuum seal jars should be placed 
upright while cooling, and the clamp removed when the 
jar is cool. Then lift by the top and turn upside down, 
as a test for leakage. 

15. Wash and dry each jar, label and store. If 



The Winter Food Supply 253 

storage place is exposed to light, wrap each jar in 
paper preferably brown, as light will either fade or 
darken the color of products canned in glass. The 
boxes in which jars were brought afford good storage. 
Store in a cool, dark place, preferably dry. Exposure 
to mold will cause decay of rubber, allowing the leak- 
age of air into jars. Paper wrappings prevent mold. 
Care should be taken to store canned vegetables and 
fruits where they will be protected from freezing. If 
the place of storage is not frost-proof, the jars should 
be removed to a warmer place during severe weather. 



254 



City Homes on Country Lanes 



Time Table for Scalding, Blanching and Sterilizing of Fruits and 
Vegetables by One Period Cold-pack Method 



Products 


II 


1 33 


II 


ii"l 


JJH S 




Minutes 


Minutes 


Minutes 


Minutes 


Minutes 


Fruits of all kinds 












Apricots 


1 to 2 


16 


12 


10 


5 


Blackberries 


No 


16 


12 


10 


5 


Blueberries 


No 


16 


12 


10 


5 


Cherries (sweet) 


No 


16 


12 


10 


5 


Dewberries 


No 


16 


12 


10 


5 


Grapes 


No 


16 


12 


10 


5 


Peaches 


1 to 2 


16 


12 


10 


5 


Plums 


No 


16 


12 


10 


5 


Raspberries 


No 


16 


12 


10 


5 


Strawberries 


No 


16 


12 


10 


5 


Citrus Fruits 


ly 


12 


8 


6 


4 


Cherries (sour) 


No 


16 


12 


10 


5 


Cranberries 


No 


16 


12 


10 


5 


Currants 


No 


16 


12 


10 


5 


Gooseberries 


No 


16 


12 


10 


5 


Rhubarb (blanch before 












paring) 


1 to 2 


16 


12 


10 


5 


Apples 


iy 2 


20 


12 


8 


6 


Pears 


ly 


20 


12 


8 


6 


Figs 


15 


40 


30 


25 


20 


Pineapple 


10 


30 


25 


25 


18 


Quince 


6 


40 


30 


25 


20 


Special Vegetables and 












Combinations 












Tomatoes 


1 to 3 


22 


18 


15 


10 


Tomatoes and corn . . . 


T.2;C. 10 


90 


75 


60 


45 


Egg-plant 


3 


60 


45 


45 


30 


Corn on cob or cut off . 


5 


180 


90 


60 


45 


Pumpkin 


5 


90 


50 


40 


35 


Squash 


5 


90 


50 


40 


35 


Hominy 


5 


120 


90 


60 


40 


Cabbage or Sauerkraut 


5 


90 


75 


60 


35 



The Winter Food Supply 255 

Time Table for Scalding, Blanching and Sterilizing of Fruits and 

Vegetables by One Period Cold-pack Method 
Greens or Pot Herbs 

Asparagus 5 120 90 50 35 

Brussels sprouts , . 5 120 90 50 35 

Cauliflower 5 120 90 50 35 

Pepper cress . 15 120 90 50 35 

Lamb's quarters 15 120 90 50 35 

Sour dock 15 120 90 50 35 

Smartweed sprouts ... 15 120 90 50 35 

Purslane or "Puslej" . 15 120 90 50 35 

Pokeweed 15 120 90 50 35 

Dandelion 15 120 90 50 35 

Marsh marigold 15 120 90 50 35 

Wild mustard 15 120 90 50 35 

Milk weed (tender 

sprouts and young 

leaves) 15 120 90 50 35 

Pod Vegetables 

Beans (Lima or string) 5 120 90 60 40 

Okra ;. 5 120 90 60 40 

Peas 5 120 90 60 40 

Roots and Tubers 



Beets 


6 


90 


75 


60 


35 




6 


90 


75 


60 


35 


Sweet potatoes 


6 


90 


75 


60 


35 


Other roots and tu- 
bers, as parsnips or 
turnips 


6 


90 


75 


60 


35 


Soups all kinds 




90 


75 


60 


45 


Shellfish 


3 


180 


120 


90 


60 


Poultry and game . . 
Fish 


20 
5 


210 
180 


180 
180 


150 
150 


60 
90 


Pork and beef 


30 


240 


240 


210 


90 



CHAPTER IV 

LIVESTOCK FOR THE GARDEN HOME 

IN earlier pages the claims of various kinds of small 
livestock logically pertaining to the home in a 
garden have been set forth from the standpoint 
of so many elements entering into the luxurious table. 
Something has been said of methods as related to the 
small holding, since it would not be feasible to keep 
chickens, for example, as they are usually kept on the 
farm. The true garden home is a condensed farm, to 
the extent of supplying many things for family use: 
and livestock must be housed and fed in accordance 
with this principle. 

Housing methods have been touched upon in preced- 
ing pages. In dealing with these and also with rations 
for chickens, squabs, rabbits and goats, I have 
followed formulas supplied by the Government, or 
drawn upon the experience of persons with whose work 
I am familiar, and whom I know to have been especially 
successful. There are, of course, many different ways 
of housing and feeding hens. Elsewhere I have spoken 
of Charles Weeks and his methods of housing. His 
suggestions for feeding laying hens are as follows : 

Dry Mash: 4 parts cracked wheat; 1 part medium 
cracked corn (Indian corn or maize) ; 1 part good qual- 
ity dried-beef scrap; *4 part soy bean meal (coarse 

256 



Livestock for the Garden Home 257 

ground) ; % part oil cake meal (linseed) ; ^ part 
charcoal. 

Grain mixture: 3 parts whole wheat and 1 part 
Egyptian corn (perhaps Kaffir corn, where Egyptian 
is not grown). If hulled oats and barley are added 
to this in same proportions as Egyptian corn, it will 
add variety. Mr. Weeks gets best results by keeping 
this grain before his hens, the same as the dry mash. 
He has a hopper with two compartments of equal size 
one filled with the dry mash, one with the mixed grain. 
He never, under any circumstances throws the grain 
on the floor, as the hens will eat more or less filth and 
kick up a dust that is very bad for them. 

Mr. Weeks gives the hens a variety of fresh green 
feed. The three best are kale, wurzel beets and alfalfa. 
Barley, beets, cabbage and rape for winter, and kale, 
beet-tops and alfalfa for summer is his programme. 
He says you must have plenty of rich soil and good 
water and keep the green stuff growing and in front of 
your hens to make them produce the eggs. 

Mr. Clarence Ray King, of Hayward, California, one 
of the most successful producers in the country, UFCS 
this ration for squabs : Wheat, Egyptian corn, milo 
maize, small yellow corn, dry peas, hemp seed and buck- 
wheat, mixed in certain proportions which vary at dif- 
ferent seasons. For example, he feeds more whole corn 
in winter, because it is very heating. A little lettuce 
once a week is nice, but not of vital importance, ac- 
cording to Mr. King. Plenty of fresh water should 
always be on hand, as they like to take frequent baths. 

The experience of Mrs. W. W. Hevener as an incident 
of acre-farming has been referred to elsewhere. She 



258 City Homes on Country Lanes 

makes the following suggestions with reference to the 
delicate art of raising turkeys : 

"Let them fast the first day after hatching, then for 
two weeks feed them bread-crumbs, hard boiled eggs 
(shell and all), and onion. Feed sparingly, as too much 
is sure death. However, they may have all the lettuce 
and onion they will eat. They must have grit, char- 
coal and pure water at all times. When two weeks 
old, mix in a little cracked wheat, and about six weeks 
before Thanksgiving, start them on corn." Mrs. 
Hevener started with five turkeys in a coop 10x12, 
letting them range over about an acre of ground, when 
they got older, allowing them to roost in the trees at 
night. (This was in California.) Later she had 
thirty in all. 

In regard to rabbit rations, the United States De- 
partment of Agriculture supplies the following : 

Clean oats (whole or crushed), bright, well-cured 
hay, and a small portion of some kind of greens daily is 
the steady diet used in most rabbitries. Crushed barley 
may be substituted for oats ; clover or alfalfa may be 
used with green oats or timothy hay ; and the greens 
may consist of carrots, rutabagas, prunings from apple 
and cherry trees, and plantain, dock, burdock, dande- 
lion, cauliflower, lettuce or lawn clippings. All grass 
should be clean, and not fed when moldy or fermented. 
A variety of feed is essential. 

Warm mashes should be given daily to the nursing 
doe and to young rabbits for a time after they are 
weaned. All rabbits are benefited by warm mashes in 
very cold weather. 

The quantity of grain required by rabbits depends 



Livestock for the Garden Home 259 

on their age and condition, and also on the kind and 
quantity of other feed they receive. Some rabbits re- 
quire more grain than others. Only by noticing the 
condition of each animal day by day can its feed be 
properly regulated. They never should be allowed to 
become heavy with fat unless wanted for the table. 
Eighteen or twenty young rabbits from three to five 
months old having a pint of crushed oats or barley a 
day, in addition to plenty of dry alfalfa and greens, 
will grow very nicely. 

Fattening rabbits for meat may begin at any time 
after they are 10 weeks old, and should continue 3 weeks, 
the animals being confined in small quarters to prevent 
their getting too much exercise. Reduce the propor- 
tion of their green feed, increasing that of their grain. 
By gradually replacing half the usual grain ration with 
corn meal the rate of fattening can be increased. 

Most breeders feed rabbits twice daily, giving greens 
in the morning and dry and warm mashes in the evening, 
but keep a supply of dry hay constantly before them. 
Rabbits that are fed two or three times a day should 
not be supplied with a larger grain ration than they can 
clean up in a short time. Water should be given every 
morning, but in freezing weather it should be removed 
\vhen the rabbit has finished drinking. Salt should be 
supplied with the oats two or three times a week; or a 
small piece of rock salt may be kept inside the feeding 
pan. 

Hay, oats, or other coarse, dry feed should not be 
fed to young rabbits before they are weaned, and only 
limited quantities should be allowed them for a week 
afterward, as such feed eaten in excess causes indigeg- 



60 City Hornet on Country Lanet 

tion. Too much green feed is equally injurious to young 
rabbits during this period. Should digestive troubles 
result from over-eating either class of food, the bowels 
may be regulated by bread and milk ; and an occasional 
feed of dandelion leaves will prove beneficial. 

Cabbage leaves are not good for young rabbits, and 
should be fed sparingly to adults kept in hutches. In 
open runs a larger variety of feed may be used with 
safety than under hutch management. All dishes should 
be cleaned and scaled frequently. 

The Government uses the following daily rations for 
goats at the experimental farm at Beltsville, Maryland : 

A ration of grain, consisting of 4 parts cracked corn ; 
4 parts oats; 2 parts bran; 1 part oil meal. This is 
the average per cent, although it varies in some cases. 
For roughage, alfalfa is much preferred, but any hay, 
and even a little corn-fodder is all right. Beets, tur- 
nips, carrots, etc. the sort of stuff there is usually a 
surplus of in the family garden chopped up, makes 
good feed. Of course when on pasture only the milch 
goats get grain. Never pasture them where there is 
laurel, as it will kill them to eat it. 

An average high-grade goat gives 4 Ibs. of milk a 
day for 10 months of the year. Goats thirty-one- 
thirty-seconds pure bred are eligible to registry. 
Saanens are preferred to Toggenburgs at Beltsville, al- 
though there is little difference, except that the Saanens 
are perhaps not quite so nervous. 

Not much is known about the intensive pig; but one 
can see at a glance that if pigs are to figure among the 
livestock of a Garden Home, there must be not only an 
intensive but an exceedingly sanitary pig. Some years 



Livestock for the Garden Home 261 

ago Dr. A. M. Ranck devised an odorless pigpen which 
received the hearty commendation of the Department of 
Agriculture during the War, when the movement for 
home production was at its height. The odorless pig- 
pen was fitted with a 6x6 ft. concrete floor inside, with 
an outside concrete feeding floor of the same dimensions. 
The pen was thoroughly screened with mosquito and 
fly-proof wire. To the feeding floor connected a tile 
drain to carry off the refuse, this drain being also con- 
nected to the bottom of a large wallowing basin to be 
filled with pure water for the pig's bath. A wooden 
plug of about 6 inches in diameter was used to stop the 
outlet in the bottom of this basin; the water-trough 
at the right of the door inside the pen, being sunk into 
the concrete floor. A door was constructed in the out- 
side pen so that dirt and refuse could be thrown out 
with a small shovel. 

The pen was so arranged that it could be flushed out 
every day from an inside tap to which a hose was 
attached; though buckets of water could be used if 
there were no hose connections. Ventilation was pro- 
vided by three doors, opening South, East and West. 
The house was located within 30 yards of the ba'ck of 
the residence, for convenience in carrying the kitchen 
waste to the pigs. 

The cost of the house was as follows : 

Lumber $15.00 

15 sacks of cement 9.00 

2 sq. yds. gravel 4.00 

1 sq. yd. sand 2.00 

Hardware 1.50 

Labor 20.10 

$51.60 



S6S City Homes on Country Lanes 

The above does not include 36 joints of tile and the 
labor of putting in the drain. Two pigs weighing 50 
and 54 Ibs. were placed in the pen and for 120 days 
an average of 2 quarts of corn a day and from 14 to 
40 Ibs. of kitchen waste, such as potato parings, the 
outside leaves of vegetables, scraps from the table, 
dishwater and skim milk was fed. The pigs gained 142 
pounds weight, and were killed for home use. 



CHAPTER V 

THE BEST TEACHERS EXAMPLE AND EXPERIENCE 

THERE is no text-book for the people of a garden 
city so good as successful example. The foun- 
ders of such communities owe it to themselves 
and to their followers to see that this mode of teaching 
is provided at the outset of the undertaking. 

The ideal demonstrator is the man who has been 
through the experience himself, for the purpose of sat- 
isfying his own hunger for a home-in-a-garden. He 
must be both believer and practitioner even a devotee, 
if you please. He must be possessed by the conviction 
that of all the jobs a heedless civilization has left un- 
done the biggest and most vital is the job of making 
it possible for every ambitious, industrious family to 
insure itself against hunger and want, as prudent men 
insure themselves against other risks. 

Find such a man there are many to be had, and 
there will be many more in the future establish him at 
the very beginning in a demonstration place fitted to 
stand as a model for others to emulate, and the standard 
of a thousand garden homes is set up, just as the flag 
of our country is raised on the Fourth of July. This is 
the first constructive step in true community-building. 
It is worth all the books that could be written. The day 
will come when such demonstration places will be as 

263 



264 City Homes on Country Lanes 

common as public school-houses; and, indeed, they are 
indispensable to any system of education in a nation of 
free men. 

The ideal demonstrator is a man with a wife who 
shares with him both the ideals of the garden home, and 
a comprehensive knowledge of its technique. This is 
true because this sort of a home is in the highest sense 
a domestic establishment. I love to think of it as the 
perfect setting for domestic happiness this enduring 
provision for food and shelter in the midst of congenial 
neighbors. To make it precisely that is the crux of 
the demonstration. 

The final test, the conclusive teaching, comes with 
experience. The best text-book and the best demonstra- 
tion can only show the way. There will be varying de- 
grees of success; and there will be disappointments, 
ranging all the way from partial to total failure. The 
end to be aimed at is good average success. This 
largely turns upon the psychology of the community, 
and that is a matter which depends much upon the 
quality and spirit of leadership in various departments 
of the community life. 

It has been well said that leadership is never con- 
ferred; it is assumed. Happy is the community where 
it is assumed by the right men and women by those 
who deeply realize that the New Earth is to be a holy 
place, and that the opportunity to assist in its evolu- 
tion, in a capacity however humble, is a call to holy 
service. 



266 



City Homes on Country Lanes 




The Best Teachers Example and Experience 267 



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City Hornet on Country Lanes 



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L ENVOI 



INDEX 



Appendicitis often due to badly- 
balanced food rations, p. 18. 

Back-to-land movement a fail- 
ure, p. 15. 

Baker, Ray Stannard, p. 41. 

Binder, Dr. Rudolph M., p. 43. 

Burbank, Luther, quoted, p. 104. 

Bussiere, Adrian, on methods 
of mushroom culture, p. 237. 

Calder, Senator, reports on 
need of homes, p. 212. 

Canning, methods of, p. 240. 

Cape Cod District compared 
with California, p. 100. 

Co-operative stores, wisdom of, 
p. 214. 

"David Grayson," pp. 41, 60. 
De Vries, Prof. Hugo, quoted, 
p. 116. 

Free, Miss Mabel, successful 

gardener, p. 186. 
Frank, Mr. and Mrs. George 

B., work of, p. 117. 

Golden Gate Park, p. 38. 
Gottsch, John W., poultry ex- 
perience of, p. 131. 

Hall, Bolton, advocate of small 

holdings, p. 221. 
Hartranft, Marshall V., quoted, 

p. 88. 
Health in city and country, 

p. 17-33. 



Hevener, W. W., produces 

turkeys intensively, p. 147; 

feeding methods, p. 258. 
Hobden, George, garden of, 

p. 119. 

Hookworm, p. 18. 
Hoover, Herbert, in aid of 

European children, p. 35. 

Infant mortality, p. 19. 

Kincaid, Hon. Moses P., p. 208. 

King, Clarence Ray, successful 
pigeon-breeder, p. 144; feed- 
ing ration, p. 257. 

Kraft, Miss Emma, breeder of 
champion Nubian goats, p. 
186. 

Kropotkin, Prince, influence of, 
p. 221. 

Lane, Franklin K., plans for 
reconstruction, p. 11; in- 
augurates investigation of 
rural life, p. 15; Annual Re- 
port of 1919, quoted, p. 66, 
"I am for the Chimes," p. 
180; Soldier Settlement, 
plans of, p. 206. 

Land tenure not discussed, p. 
222. 

Letchworth, England, Garden 
City of, p. 81. 

Lincoln, Abraham, quoted, p. 
83. 



Malaria, a mosquito-borne 
disease, p. 18. 



269 



270 



Index 



Massachusetts, preponderance 

of urban population, p. 14. 
Maternity, deaths from, p. 19. 
Maxwell, George H., quoted, 

p. 81. 
Mead, Dr. Elwood, influence of, 

p. 207. 
Michigan, depopulation of 

agricultural districts in, p. 

14. 
Middle West, rural decline in, 

p. 14. 
Milk supply purer in city than 

in country, p. 17. 
Minnesota, slight increase in 

number of farms, p. 14. 
Mormon Church, leadership of, 

p. 204. 
Mushrooms, culture of, p. 237. 

National War Garden Com- 
mission, p. 76. 

New England farm abandon- 
ment, p. 14. 

New York State, abandoned 
farms, p. 15; rural and ur- 
ban population compared, p. 
15. 

Ohio, decrease in farm popu- 
lation and habitable farm- 
houses, p. 14. 

Old-age pension for Govern- 
ment workers, p. 68. 

Pack, Charles Lathrop, Chair- 
man National War Garden 
Commission, p. 76. 

Periodicals, urban and rural 
circulation of leading, p. 28. 

Phair, Gordon, experiments 
with potted rabbit, p. 137. 

Philo poultry system, p. 125. 

Pilgrims, cheap land near where 
they landed, p. 14. 

Pneumonia, cause of, p. 18. 



Quick, Herbert, quoted, p. 5. 

Red Cross assistance to city 
mothers, p. 20. 

Reichardt, Otto, intensive duck 
breeder, p. 147. 

Religion in city and country, p. 
29-31. 

Richards, Miss Irmagarde, au- 
thority on milk goats, p. 154. 

Rockefeller Foundation, social 
surveys of, p. 18. 

Ross, Douglas W., p. 47. 

Rouge, Leon, expert mushroom- 
grower, p. 164. 

Rural Homes Bill, p. 207. 

Schools, relative advantages of 
city and country, p. 23-27. 

Schufeldt, Prof. C. L., p. 97. 

Sewerage, relation to health of, 
p. 18. 

Sherman, Mrs. G. M., maker of 
rabbit fur garments, p. 141. 

Smoot, Senator Reed, p. 207, 
208. 

Soils, various kinds and treat- 
ment of, p. 227. 

Soldier Settlement legislation, 
p. 206. 

Tenant farmers, p. 15. 
Typhoid fever, p. 17. 

Weeks, Charles, poultry system 
of, 126 ; feeding ration, p. 256. 

Williams, Dr. Henry Smith, 
quoted, p. 106. 

Wilson, Woodrow, quoted, p. 79. 

Wisconsin, slight increase in 
number of farms, p. 14. 

Young, Brigham, leads the 
pioneers to Salt Lake Valley, 
p. 203; his qualities as an 
empire-builder, p. 204.